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Bernetta

Event Recap

Our First Le Diner en Blanc (Tampa) Experience

Are you familiar with the whole Le DIner en Blanc experience? When I ask people, it’s usually 50/50. The people that have heard of it, love the experience and have great things to say about it. The people that haven’t usually have the opposite response when you tell them what’s all involved.

I learned about Le Diner en Blanc when I lived in Atlanta through social media. One night I was on FB (or Meta) and saw my friends in all white having a blast in the middle of Peachtree in front of the Fox Theatre, in the street with hundreds of other people. Now when I lived in Atlanta, I was (at least I like to think I was) in the who’s who and was invited to many things. However, when I learned this was invite only and I knew nothing about it – my ears perked up and I went into research mode.

I learned that Le Diner en Blanc was started with just a handful of friends by François Pasquier in 1988, Le Dîner en Blanc® de Paris continues to assemble close to 10,000 guest every year. In 2018 a record 17,000 guests from Paris and around the world gathered at the Esplanade des Invalides to celebrate its 30th anniversary.

Le Dîner en Blanc® began as a strictly word-of-mouth event. Today, it has grown to rely on the Internet and social media to communicate with its members and others who are curious about the event. Although the technology behind this fantastic event may have changed over the years, the principles fueling it have not; guests continue to gather at a secret location with the sole purpose of sharing a gourmet meal with good friends at the heart of one of their city’s most beautiful locations.

What are the key rules of the event?

Le Dîner en Blanc® is quite different from other special events. The evening takes place in a crowded public place that was not designed for such a purpose. Dîner en Blanc must necessarily remain controlled in order to continue holding future events.

  • In order to participate, guests must be a member or be sponsored by a member from the previous year, or they must sign up to official website’s waiting list.
  • Once confirmed, each guests’ participation in the event becomes mandatory, regardless of weather conditions, as Dîner en Blanc is a rain or shine event.
  • Participants arrive and then depart in unison by chartered bus or organized public transportation.
  • They take all of their belongings with them at the end of the night, including leftovers and trash, and they leave the site as clean as it was upon arrival.

My experience

Well, this was the first time they were having this event in Tampa. My husband was my guest, but my friend Jessica came as well with her close friend. My experience started out rocky with communicating with my team lead. Our event was on November 6th. We were able to get our tickets only 3 weeks before the actual event. So time was precious. There are certain things you have to have/do to attend. They also assign you table/group leaders to answer your questions up until the actual event. I emailed my table lead a question about a table, she didn’t respond for 6 days! That’s almost a week. I’m glad we didn’t wait on her or we would have been out of gas.

Our Prep

We had to purchase/bring a table (it had to be a certain size), white chairs, table cloths, napkins, we bought gold silverware, white plates with gold trim (our china) and a centerpiece. Not to mention our outfits. You can bring your own food or purchase it there. We bought it through them. We enjoyed it. Oh, you have to buy your wine through them and only bring coke products if you’re not drinking wine or champagne. 

Here’s an Amazon list for all things Diner en Blanc.

When we arrived, we called our group leader. WRONG NUMBER. The person that answered the phone gave me another wrong number, then never picked up when I called back or returned my text for help. So, once we parked we walked to a couple different spots looking for our table lead. No one could help. It was frustrating. Not only was the number wrong, our table/group lead was not doing anything to find her people. She could have put something in the message boards and/or walked around to find us (her people). It was a mess and I thought my night was going to suck if this event is starting out like this. We finally found her after walking around with a wagon full of things for 30-40 minutes. PISSED. **It would be one thing if it were just us that were lost, but it was almost her whole group that was lost.**

One cool thing is you don’t know where you’re going to be dining until you get to the spot. When we arrived it was the Tampa zoo parking lot. We just figured we’d be in the zoo because once you park, you never walk farther than 6 minutes, so it had to be the zoo. It was the zoo.

Let me also say this, they told us our outfits has to be papercopy white. No ivory, cream, nude … but WHITE WHITE. We were at home stressing hard. I even bought another white outfit because my original dress was a tad darker than copy paper. When we got there … people had on ALL TYPES OF WHITE!! SMH! One girl had on a straight nude dress with snake skin boots! There was NO white in it! 99% of people had on white white, but for the few that tried it, they got by because no one was checking looks or anything else. I was kind of disappointed in that because we went to great lengths to do all the right things and no one was making sure everyone did what they were supposed to do.

Once we finally got in, we set up our table and the fun began. It didn’t take long to set up. My husband got our food and wine and we started taking pics. Tradition is, you do the napkin spin then eat. Luckily, we had a lady sit next to us that has been to multiple Le Diners and she told us all of tips and tricks. After we ate, we did the infamous sparkle light, then it was time to dance the night away. (Video footage below)

I promise that DJ must have known I was coming because he played all of my hits. I danced like I was in college or right out of college. We had a ball. Everyone had great energy and it was just a great night. We left around 9:30. It really was a night to remember. Would I do it again, absolutely. Would I do it in another city. Yes.

I hear DC is the best! I’ve had friends tell me about their experiences in Atlanta, Dallas, Orlando, Jacksonville, Chicago, and New York. If I get the opportunity to go next year, sign me up!

Have you been? What’s your experience?

Food & Health

Why Goli Gummies Are Getting All of My Money!

I initially learned about Gummies from the famous Tabitha Brown. I kept thinking, what is this gummy she keeps raving about? It wasn’t until she started promoting the Blue Goli Ashwagandha gummies that my interest peaked. She mentioned something about it making you want to get ummmmm “a tad more frisky in le bedroom” ok, those are my words but she said something like that. 

Since then, I’ve bought the blue ones, the red ones, the orange ones and now the green ones! It’s like Goli Gummies has just taken all of my money. The good part is that I really like these gummies and have no problem paying for things that are good for me and good to me.  Use code: BernettaStyle for 10% off your purchase to try one or a few.

Who is Goli? Why do they do what they do? 

Goli Nutrition is an inventive, people focused nutrition company that is committed to providing the world with a key to sustainable wellness through innovative products that are suitable for any lifestyle. Goli Nutrition strives to make health simple by helping consumers reach their nutrition goals with products that make taking daily supplements enjoyable. Goli Nutrition’s deep rooted commitment provides the world with easy access to wellness through innovative products that are Gluten-Free, Non-GMO, Vegan, Gelatin-Free, Kosher and free of colors and flavors from artificial sources.

Here’s a summary of what the Goli Gummies can do for you:

OUR PATENTED FORMULA COMBINES APPLE CIDER VINEGAR WITH VITAMIN B9 AND B12 TO HELP SUPPORT:

Immune Health The ingredients in Goli ACV Gummies help to support a healthy immune system.

Cellular Energy Production The ingredients in Goli ACV Gummies help convert the food you eat into cellular energy, giving your body the healthy support it needs to get you through the day.

Heart Health The ingredients in Goli ACV Gummies play a fundamental role in maintaining homocysteine levels, which help support a healthy heart.

Healthy Nutrient Metabolism The ingredients in Goli Gummies help your body metabolize nutrients more effectively.

Healthy Nervous System The ingredients in Goli ACV Gummies help support healthy nervous system function.

Overall Good Health The ingredients in Goli ACV Gummies promote overall health and wellbeing.

 

ASHWA Gummies

The ancient Indian herb, Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera), has been recognized for its medicinal properties for over 5,000 years. It is rooted in Ayurveda, a holistic and natural system of medicine based on the concept that health and wellness depend on a balance between physical and mental health by utilizing natural medicine.

Ashwagandha is also an adaptogen—a plant that helps the body maintain balance and adjust to stress. This function of Ashwagandha is well-documented and heavily backed by modern science. KSM-66® Ashwagandha is the highest concentration of Ashwagandha extract on the market with extensive research behind it that supports various health benefits.

KSM-66® Ashwagandha has been clinically proven to:

Help reduce stress and tension

Help promote memory and concentration

Support endurance, strength, muscle size

Improve sleep quality

Support sexual function

Reduce and maintain healthy body weight

CLEAN, PLANT-BASED BEAUTY & WELLNESS GUMMIES – SUPERFRUITS

Their unique blend captures the distinctive properties of vitamins, minerals and botanicals resulting in a perfect synergy of beauty, wellness and nutrition.

Their delicious Superfruits Gummies are filled with antioxidants and essential nutrients for real results. This proprietary formula improves collagen formation and skin elasticity, restores skin’s radiance, supports a healthy immune system and so much more!

INGREDIENTS

Bamboo Shoot Extract (Silica) Bamboo extract is a rich source of natural silica, commonly referred to as Bamboo Silica, a trace mineral that supports the production of collagen, giving skin a more plump and youthful appearance.

Vitamin A Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin that plays an essential role in supporting a healthy immune system and maintaining vision.

Vitamin C Vitamin C is well-known for its powerful antioxidant activity and immune support capabilities. It also aids with collagen production which improves skin’s elasticity and overall appearance.

Vitamin E Vitamin E is a fat-soluble vitamin that supports immune health and maintains healthy eyes.

Zinc Zinc is a necessary nutrient for immune support and overall health. It aids with collagen synthesis and improves wound healing.

Pectin Pectin is a unique fiber found in fruits and vegetables. Unlike most other gummies on the market that are made with gelatin, Goli Superfruits Gummies are made with pectin, from fruit peels, making them vegan friendly and as such, enjoyable by many different lifestyles and diets.

Goli® Supergreens Gummies

Goli® Supergreens Gummies are made with a nutrient rich blend of 11 super greens, probiotics, essential vitamins, nutrients and minerals that help provide so many incredible benefits! Our plant-based formula helps you incorporate nutrient rich ingredients into your daily routine, in a delicious and convenient way! 

So as you can see there is a variety to choose from. I love that each one does something different for the body. That’s probably why I feel I want them all. Have you tried one? Which one is your favorite? What do you think about the brand new Supergreens?

 

Learn more here: https://go.goli.com/bernettastyle

PROMO CODE bernettastyle 

Finance

I’m a Trader.

I’ve been an influencer for 10+ years. What does that even mean? It means for 10+ years, I’ve shared many stories and experiences about my life. The goal has always been to share things that make your life easier. Sometimes I hit the mark, sometimes I didn’t.

Over the last two years, I’ve been going back and forth about this site. Do I want to keep BernettaStyle? Do I want to just walk away? I honestly feel like I did walk away for a minute. I just didn’t have it in me to write, type, edit etc. Also, Instagram and reels have taken over so much, do people even still read blogs? Hahaha!!

Well, I titled this post I’m a trader because I am. Over the last two years, I been training on how to trade. Trade stocks, options and futures. I absolutely love it.

While, BernettaStyle has been good to me and my family. I have new goals, new dreams, new desires and it doesn’t include necessarily being an intentional influencer. What does that mean? It means, that I will keep this site but I’m returning back to first feeling of starting this blog. Which was sharing to share and because it feels good. It means, that I will post when I want to share something. I still always want to provide value and not make this a “look at me” site.

What do you love about trading?

I’ve always had a interest in stocks. Since 1999. I opened my first brokerage with Fidelity in 1999 when I started working at IBM. My then manager gave me a stock tip and I opened an account. What’s funny is, back then you couldn’t buy and sell yourself like you could do now with Robinhood, Webull, TD Ameritrade. Back then you had to use a broker for everything. So, when I opened this Fidelity account with this stock tip, the stock did go up – but I didn’t know I should have sold it and not hold. I lost $1000. What an expensive lesson. It didn’t deter me from investing, but just a lesson to kickstart my journey.

Fast forward to 2018. I was working at some job here in Florida and everytime I could check my phone, I was buying and selling stock on Robinhood. All of sudden, I saw a video about options and how you can make money faster.

One option contract is equal to 100 stocks. (Mind blown). It was also a black woman teaching people how to do that. Well, her class was more that I could spend at the time so I didn’t take the class, but my interest for options was now there.

In 2018, I joined a Build-a-bag options group through Stocks and Stilettoes. You had to start with $500 and pay $75 monthly with the hopes of having a BIG BAG of money in one year. I thought we would learn options in the group. I was wrong. No one knew anything major and I lost money and time. 2019, I invested in a swing trading class with Stocks and Stilettoes & LaToyia from The Profit Room. This was what I needed the entire time. About six months later, I invested in an options class with The Profit Room and in early 2021 a futures class. Honestly, I’m going to have to revisit the futures class again because I needed more time with the information. 

I’m hooked.

I love trading because once you learn the strategies of trading, you can make “change your life forever” kind of money. Yes, you can lose a lot too. I’ve lost ALOT on my journey. However, I’ve made money as well. I love trading because once I master this, I don’t have to sell anything else (entrepreneurship is ALOT) and I won’t have to work for anyone (if I choose not too).

My long term goal is to trade full time like my mentors Ernest & LaToya, owners of The Profit Room. They are the real deal. Their students are the real deal and everyone is an open book. They want us to learn, grow and make this money.

I look at my trading journey as my own personal masters program. You don’t start college on day 1 and have a degree on day 2. You have to go through the process, learn, experience, do, make mistakes and have milestones. It’s the same with trading. You have to want to learn this because if it was easy, everyone would be doing it, but once you learn it and apply the strategies correctly it becomes easy.

So, I’m a trader. I have a two year goal. I’m going to share it here to put it in the atmosphere and watch it manifest.

Goal: I want to make my current salary twice over within the next two years. Meaning, I want to make double my currently salary in under 2 years trading stocks, options and futures by July 2023.

My son graduates high school in May 2023. It would be amazing to hit the goal by then. It’s doable. I will tell you what that magic number is when I hit the goal. Why that goal? Because if I can double my work salary in under two years, that means I can successfully trade as a full time trader and not need a job. Now, if I want to keep working after I reach this goal, that will be my choice but reaching this goal means I now have to skills to trade without a job.

“What’s the alternative?”

Ernest and Latoya often interview their students via youtube and the last interview I heard was from a lady who is a realtor who has found success trading futures. One thing that rings in my head when they asked her why does she want to trade now? Her response was “What’s the alternative?” I promise I can’t get that out of my head. What’s the alternative for me if I don’t trade? For me? Not you.

The alternative is working for someone until retirement. Putting in my vacation days a few times a year. I want more. Living life on the schedule of the business. I want ALOT more. I want to live a different life. Trading successfully will help me create that life.

I’m 44 and the first goal was to be able to retire working at 50 because of trading. However, now I have this new goal ($ amount) within two years. And when I reach my goal, it doesn’t mean I’m quitting my job. It just means I can if I want too. I actually love the company I work for. But I’m going to love the life I’m creating for myself and my family more. “What’s the alternative?”

So how am I going to reach my goal? Remember, I told you that I look at this journey as my own personal masters program. I’ve surrounded myself with amazing traders and continue to learn from them daily. I’m on a weekly Sunday calls with Ernest/LaToya (a group call) about tickers, charts and how the market is moving. There’s another call with other profit room traders about strategies. I will also chart daily. I will master support and resistance (I’m pretty good now, if I do say so myself). I will master candlesticks, entry, exit and SL. I will MASTER RISK MANAGEMENT (this is where you lose and/or keep your money).

I am so excited about this journey. So excited.

As I work towards this goal, I can share more. Feel free to ask questions.

So I’m a trader. Not so much an influencer as I was before, unless I’m influencing you to go for the life you want for yourself.

Zoom. (The song, not the platform). This was an old friend’s favorite song. It just came to me as I ended this post. Listen to it. In case you read this post old friend … I hope you’re finally happy.

Family Food & Health

Our first hand experience with COVID

I promise, I thought we made it. Meaning, we had went over a year without being personally impacted by COVID. Then it paid us a visit.

My daughter and son went to teen night at the skating rink one Friday in July. Then they went to teen night at the church the following night. A few days later (Wednesday), Bailee just wasn’t looking right. It was a look in her eyes. A look of tiredness. I touched her and she was HOT! I took her temperature and it was 102.6. That night her temp got as high as 104.

The next day we got her tested for COVID and it was positive.

I was so scared. SCARED!

There were so many questions about what will happen next. Then came my tears.

The doctor at urgent care told us to give her vitamin D, vitamin C, super B Complex, Zinc and Tylenol. We also added elderberry. We all started taking it, just in case it was coming our way. Two days later, my oldest son had a temperature of 102. And was in the bed all day. We tested him the next day. Positive.

Bailee was down for about 4 days. Earl was down 3. Once that fever broke, they were feeling better and quickly got back to normal. At the same time, I started to feel weird. Oh no!!!!!! Please don’t tell me I have COVID.

I never got tested, but as soon as they were feeling better, I got a fever and felt so weak. I was in the bed for 3 days and lost 5lbs. Day 4, I could hardly walk but it wasn’t because I was sick, it was because I hadn’t eaten. I was weak. After I started eating more, my strength came back and I started to feel better. I only had a fever on day one. I had a headache and just tiredness. Towards the end of the week, my taste and smell left for a few days, but came back. Day 5, I was taking my first walk around the block (with help).

My husband started feeling sick the same day I did (Monday), but unfortunately had a fever for 9 days. The fever lingered between 99 – 102. We were still giving him all of the same vitamins, medicine and even tried some other things people told us to try. Still, a fever for 9 days. I was TERRIFIED! I called his friends and ask them to PRAY! They did.

Prayer works

The fever finally broke on day 10. Currently, we are day 14 with my husband. He is on the other side of it but trying to get his energy back. I’m grateful through it all, he could still breathe and didn’t have any major pain. Just tired and weak. He lost 10 pounds!

I think our cases were still very mild compared to others and for that I’m grateful.

I’m sad that my daughter missed the Jr. Olympics in Texas. She was devastated, but we reassured her she still had an amazing track season, and we will go for it again next year. It was the first week in August, and although she was feeling good – she missed a week of practice and we know she wouldn’t have been competing at her best. Also, because her dad was still recovering, we couldn’t have went anyway.

I took off work to go to Houston, but I spent my vacation nursing my husband back to health and getting my children ready for school. I do not wish Covid on anyone, and that’s even the mild case. The scariest part is not knowing how it will affect you. You just don’t know. Taking care of 2 children COVID, trying to prevent your 3rd from getting it, then nursing yourself back to health while trying to help your husband and still make sure the kids are ok is ALOT!! 

Can you say this woman needs a break? Friday, I left and just went to treat myself to a crab boil. It was delish! And next month, I will be headed to Arizona for the first time with friends. I can’t wait. I need this! 

Family

Our First Five Years in Tampa! Highlights and Lowlights

August 8, 2016

Eight means new beginning (August)
Sixteen mean love (Year)
I am confessing that today starts a new beginning that I will love.

When they say time flies, it really does. It has really been five years since we’ve move to Tampa and oh what an experience it has been for us.

We decided to move to Tampa from Atlanta so I our children could enjoy growing up with their extended family. My husband’s parents are both 1 of 10 and of course they have many many aunts, uncles and cousins. Well, five years later we’re no closer to his family than before we moved here. In the beginning, it just seems like we were trying so hard to be around them but it wasn’t being reciprocated. Have you ever had a friendship where you stopped communicating and realized that you were the one doing all the communication in the first place? That was us. We were doing the most and when we stopped trying to be “apart” of the family and get to know them better – crickets.

The blessing has been that we do live just 6 minutes from my inlaws. I’m happy that my husband is now so close to his parents and 1 hour from his brother. It’s been a great having them up the street and it’s also strengthened the relationships between them and the kids.

When we moved my babies were 3, 8 and 11. They are now 8, 13 and 16! 

Highlights

Lowlights

  • Lived in a suite for [the first] 2 years while paying off debt. I didn’t know it would be that long.
  • Trying to make new friends as an adult can be … interesting. Some flourished, some didn’t. Life.
  • My dad died.
  • Covid
  • Finding new doctors for family and type 1. We’ve always loved the kids doctors, but ours … whew! 

I’m sure I’m missing a few things here and there but overall, it’s been a blessed experience. I miss my friends from Atlanta the most. I also miss the culture in Atlanta. Atlanta’s atmosphere is definitely unmatched. I’m just happy, that since my mom lives there, it always gives me a great reason to go back and visit.

I do not have any regrets about moving to Tampa. We actually don’t live in “Tampa” but a smaller city right outside of it. We can get to Tampa in 15 minutes without getting on the highway. We can cruise out of Tampa and because it’s a city on the water, there are always amazing things we can do on the water. It’s a beautiful city with beautiful weather and I always feel like I’m living in a vacation. I love our neighborhood and we have great neighbors.

I look forward to seeing what the next five years have in store.

Food & Health

MyFreeStyle provides a chance to sample FreeStyle Libre 2 System

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Abbott Diabetes Care, but all thoughts and opinions are my own. FreeStyle Libre

When I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 2015, I had no idea what that meant for me or my way of
living. I didn’t know about finger pricks, A1C, all the supplies you need and how you keep track of your
glucose levels.

For the first couple of years, I was a finger pricker. I hated it. With every finger prick it reminded me of my situation and how my life is now different. Not to mention, always trying to remember which finger I pricked last and the clean up around the pricked area. It was just #teamtoomuch.

About two years ago a friend emailed me to ask if I’d heard about the Freestyle Libre 14 day system. She
described it: “run this machine over a device, scan, and poof – no more finger pricks. No more trying to
remember what your last glucose levels were.”

I told her I had seen a commercial and it looked like a dream come true, but I honestly wasn’t sure if I could afford it or if my insurance would cover it.

Sometimes when you want something, you make excuses of why you can’t get it because you just don’t
believe you can have it. I thought it was out of my reach before I even tried to get one.

I finally made it to my doctor’s office, and he was concerned about my A1C. He wanted to track it a
different way, and that’s when he recommended, I try the FreeStyle Libre 14 day system. I was SO
EXCITED to try it out. It felt like next-level living. Fast forward two years and I’ve recently upgraded to the
FreeStyle Libre 2 system.

So what even is a CGM?

A CGM is a continuous glucose monitor. It’s a small system that continuously monitors your glucose
levels in real time. The FreeStyle Libre 2 is a small sensor (1/3 thinner than other sensors)* 1,2 about the size of two stacked quarters. It sticks directly to upper portion of your arm for up to 14 days before I have to switch to a new sensor. From there, FreeStyle Libre 2 does what it does best – measure my glucose levels while I’m enjoying life.

Some of my other favorite benefits of this device include:

  • No Fingersticks – you can make treatment decisions anytime, high or low, no fingersticks
    required†
  • Optional Alarms – one of my all-time favorite benefits! You can set the system to alert you when
    your glucose levels rise or drop. You can also set the alert parameters and customize how you’re
    notified (rings/vibrations). ‡
  • Show Trends and Patterns – the FSL 2 reader stores up to 90 days’ worth of your data, so you
    can save and email the results right to your doctor to talk through together during your next
    appointment§
  • Less Time In Hypos|| 3,4 – You can literally see in real-time how food and exercise affect your
    blood glucose levels. You can also catch hyperglycemia (too-high blood sugar) and hypoglycemia (too-low blood sugar) as they happen, avoiding a potentially dangerous situation.

How you can try out FreeStyle Libre 2 system for FREE with the MYFREESTYLE Program

I’m excited that FreeStyle Libre is making their CGM more accessible with Abbott’s MyFreeStyleProgram. (www.myfreestyle.us)

If you’re on the edge, deciding if a CGM is right for you, the MyFreeStyle program gives you the opportunity to sample FreeStyle Libre 2 for FREE¶ 

But much more than just a free sample, you’ll get curated, actionable tips and tricks along throughout the program, so you get the most out of what CGM has to offer and learn how small actions can make a huge difference when it comes to managing diabetes.

References:
*Based on a comparison to Dexcom G6.​
1. FreeStyle Libre 2 User's Manual.​
2. Data on file.  Abbott Diabetes Care.
3. Haak, T. Diabetes Therapy (2017): https://doi.org/10.1007/s13300-016-0223-6.
4. Bolinder, J. The Lancet (2016): https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(16)31535-5.
† Fingersticks are required if your glucose alarms and readings do not match symptoms or when you see Check Blood Glucose
symbol in the first twelve hours. 
‡ Notifications will only be received when alarms are turned on and the sensor is within 20 feet of the reading device 
§  Reader stores up to 90 days of glucose data so patients can see their patterns and historic trends
|| Data from this study was collected with the outside US version of the FreeStyle Libre 14 day system. FreeStyle Libre 2 has the
same features as FreeStyle Libre 14 day system with optional real-time glucose alarms. Therefore the study data is applicable to
both products. ​
¶ Eligible patients will receive one (1) FreeStyle Libre 2 sensor and reader at $0 copay. The expiration date of the voucher is 60 days from the issue date. Limit one offer per lifetime. This program is not available for patients with gestational diabetes. Only patients 4 and older are eligible to receive an offer. This offer is void where prohibited by law. Abbott may modify or rescind this offer at any time without notice. The discounts are not available to beneficiaries of Medicare, Medicaid or other federal or state healthcare programs or residents of Massachusetts, Puerto Rico and other US territories. The free sensor and reader are provided as a sample and is limited to one NDC per eligible person. The sensor and reader cannot be re-sold, traded nor submitted to any third party payer for reimbursement and is not provided as any inducement for future purchases. The free sample card is not health insurance.
Indications and Important Safety Information FreeStyle Libre 14 day system: Failure to use FreeStyle Libre 14 day system as instructed in labeling may result in missing a severe low or high glucose event and/or making a treatment decision, resulting in injury. If readings do not match symptoms or expectations, use a fingerstick value from a blood glucose meter for treatment decisions. Seek medical attention when appropriate or contact Abbott at 855-632-8658 or https://www.FreeStyle.abbott/us-en/safety-information.html for safety info.
FreeStyle Libre 2 system: Failure to use FreeStyle Libre 2 system as instructed in labeling may result in missing a severe low or high glucose event and/or making a treatment decision, resulting in injury. If glucose alarms and readings do not match symptoms or expectations, use a fingerstick value from a blood glucose meter for treatment decisions. Seek medical attention when appropriate or contact Abbott at 855-632-8658 or https://www.FreeStyle.abbott/us-en/safety-information.html for safety info.
Motivation

My New Book Alert! Introducing the “Manifest Journal”

Manifest Journal

Our words create our world. Write down your thoughts with intention and watch your dreams and goals manifest. This journal will give you a description of what manifestation is, why gratitude is important, vision/action board pages, manifesting books and podcast recommendations, affirmations, and thought-provoking questions. Use this tool, the Manifest Journal, to write until your dreams come true. 

I’ve always written things down. Whether we called them diaries, notebooks or journals, my thoughts are somewhere on paper. I learned that there was power in the written word in my mid-twenties. Especially, if you put faith, work and gratitude behind it. We are always manifesting. 

Many people approach manifestation from a place of “How can I get something to feel better?” Instead, the focus should be: “How can I feel better and therefore be an energetic match for attracting more greatness into my life?”

The mission of the Manifest Journal is to help you actually write your dreams, goals, plans, and desires out with full intention. I want you to come out of your comfort zone as YOU write out your plans for 2021.

The Manifest Journal Book includes:

    • What is Manifestation & the Power of Writing Things Down
    • 12 Manifestation Book list
    • 30 “I AM” Manifestation Affirmations
    • 21 Thought Provoking Questions
    • 5 Manifestation Podcast
    • 75 Manifestation Journal Pages
    • 10 Vision Board Pages
    • Size: 8 x 11
    • 103 pages

What makes this Manifestation Journal different?

The Vision Board Pages! You’ll learn what a vision board is, and have multiple pages to create your own vision board inside the journal. Look at it daily and take it with you if you need a friendly reminder of your dreams.

Who is Bernetta Knighten?

Bernetta Knighten, also known as at the Dream Architect is a certified Life Coach who helps motivate women in developing a blueprint to follow their dreams. Bernetta is the creator of Bernetta Style, a lifestyle site and resource focused on motherhood, marriage, and motivating mothers to live the life of their dreams, one day at a time. 

She created the My Dream Year Planner & Workbook for people who will commit to making at least one (or more) of their dreams/goals come true in a year. This planner is also a workbook that helps hold you accountable as you go through the next 365 Days.

She created the Manifest Journal to compliment the planner to aid you in getting one step closer to creating the life you dreamed about. 

Bernetta also launched The Knighten Project in 2015. It is a non-profit organization with a goal to provide foster children with brand new suitcases filled with everyday essentials as they transition into adulthood. The Midwest native earned her Bachelor’s degree from Alabama State University and currently lives in the Tampa Bay area with her husband, and 3 children.

Bernetta lives by the quote: For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.  2 Timothy 1:7

 


Finance

How We Paid Off $95,000 of Debt in Two Years!

“3 .. 2 .. 1.. WE’RE DEBT FREE!!” We shouted with the couple on the radio who just shared their debt free story on the Dave Ramsey show! This is something we shouted regularly as we listened daily hoping for one day to have our turn to scream those famous three words. 

Well, as of today we haven’t been able to scream those words on the Dave Ramsey show, but we have been able to say WE’RE DEBT FREE!! We paid off $95,000 in 2 years. 

Here’s our story

We moved to Florida from Atlanta in August 2016 to be closer to my husband’s family. We wanted our children to grow up around them. Well, the rents were too high for too little house. Also because we were homeowners before, we didn’t want to jump into buying house with all of the responsibility that comes with it and have DEBT! 

Fortunately, my in-laws had a small (I am NOT exaggerating) suite in the back of their home. I did NOT want to stay there, but my husband had a vision. After going back and forth (and a lot of screaming), I agreed. We spent about $3,000 to renovate the inside of it and make it livable. We moved into this 1 bedroom suite in September 2016. My two older children had a bedroom in their grandparents home, and my youngest slept in the back with us. Now we were all on the same land, just feet apart. 

(Yes, I lived in here for 2 years. I promise it was cute on the inside. No one came over but my best friend and my mother. It was HARD, but the reward was great – keep reading.)

At this time we had 95,000 in debt. 

My in-laws knew we had goals and did NOT charge us RENT. They did NOT ask for a DIME! Let me say that again, they did NOT charge us or ask us for a DIME! We did give them $300 a month because we were using their power, internet and just because it was the right thing to do.

All of 2017 we paid off every debt we had except for my student loan (that was 55k). So by the end of 2017 we had paid off a total of 40k in debt:

1 Student Loan (his 3K)
2 Credit cards  (both 6k)
2 Car notes (Mine 17k) (His 14k) ** We had just bought these cars too. Earl bought his in 2015, and mine in 2017 so we paid his off in 2 years and mine in one year. Before we bought those cars, we hadn’t had a car note in 10 years but we needed newer cars. 

In 2018 with only my student loan as our debt, we continued to pay the minimum but decided it was time to buy a home. We started putting money aside for the home and closed on our 4 Bed, 3 Bath, 3 Car garage home in August 2018 and moved in September 2018. Exactly 2 years from when we first moved to Florida. We were able to fix up our home with cash and that felt amazing. But wait – we still had a 55K debt hanging over our head. 

In January 2019 we agreed to pay off my student loan. It was $55k. By November, we had got it down to 26k. I was proud of us and thought that was it for the year. I didn’t see another 26k coming in 30 days. My husband said HAVE FAITH!

Shortly after that, I saw 2 FB post by my friends, Tomiko and Danielle. They both shared how they needed some money and manifested it. I already write down prayers and affirmations but I wasn’t at the time writing about my student loans. Early December I started writing everyday – “I will pay off my student loan in full. I will get 26k.” And of course praying/believing and really not worrying about it. In my mind, I was still going to set money aside and have a new goal to pay it off by March 2020.

Well, December 29th my husband said, “Happy Early Birthday! I had 2 big closings and I’m paying off your 25.6k loan balance in FULL tomorrow!” 

Mouth drop moment!! We paid it off the next morning and are officially debt free (outside of the mortgage with is our next plan).

We paid of 95k in debt in 2 years.  (2017/2019)
2 Credit cards
2 Car notes
2 Student Loans

Debt Free baby!! We followed Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University on our road to being debt free and are still following the steps. I did try to get on the his show to do the debt free scream, but we haven’t had a call back yet.

I’m still hopeful we will one day share our story on his show. (Someone share this with him, please!)

On the morning we actually paid our loan off, Bailee and I screamed when we pressed the pay button “We’re DEBT FREE!”

Oh!! Being Debt free was on my vision board too! It has manifested.

We went into 2020 debt free. And oh what a blessing it was because who knew what was in front of us with COVID. In 2020, we were still able to thrive. With only house bills to pay, we were able to get new floors, cabinets, redesigned our office and BUILT A POOL – all debt free. 

In all honestly, when you’re in a mountain of debt, it can look overwhelming. But once you make up your mind to get rid off it, it’s 100% possible. I was willing to stay in a one bedroom suite for 2 years to get that debt paid off. One thing Dave Ramsey says is,

“If you will live like no one else, later you can live like no one else.”

On days when it seemed like it was too far off, those stories on the Dave Ramsey show kept me motivated and recharged me. 

Stay tuned for the paid off house post!

Thank you GOD!

Reviews/Recaps

#CelebrateSoulfully at Disney Springs This February

Last week, my husband and I were given a front row seat to experience “Celebrate Soulfully at Walt Disney World” at Disney Springs. #CelebrateSoulfully honors Black culture and spotlights many of the African American talent that have contributed to Disney throughout the years. 

We were able to walk throughout Disney Springs trying new dishes, listening to jazz-inspired entertainment, viewed art displays and even learned some amazing history lessons. 

We were able to taste wine by black winemakers, sausage topped with crawfish and mac & cheese bites.

Earl and I visited Amorette’s Patisserie, with their debut of two new petite cakes. One cake celebrates Disney’s first Black princess, Princess Tiana, while the other features Joe Gardner, the African American jazz musician at the heart of “Soul.” Both are chocolate cakes with raspberry mousse.

The day started out listening to Motown in Motion. You can listen to them 3 days a week on the Disney stage across from the World of Disney. We also enjoyed the Southern Vernacular Art collection in the House of Blues.

It was so much history in that restaurant, that they gave us a piece by piece tour. It’s also the largest collection of Outsider and American Folk Art in the country. It displays art from more than 150 self taught and mostly Black artist.

We also visited the brand new M&M Store and the new donut shop, Everglazed donuts & brew.

Lastly, once we finished at Disney Springs, we headed to Epcot to check out the #ArtfulEpcot Soul Display. Have you seen the move Soul on Disney+? It’s a good movie, it is based off of a real life middle school music teacher and really causes you to think about what you’re doing with your life. 

If you’re in Orlando this month, visit Disney Springs and/or Epcot to check out #CelebrateSoulfully and #ArtfulEpcot. Take your time and let yourself explore.

Family

We Built a Swimming Pool!

Yes, I’m still in shock that we have our own swimming pool. 

[VIDEO BELOW] I’ve included a video of the pool process if you’re interested in getting one built. My tip is – buy a house with a pool instead.
 
Growing up (in a north Chicago suburb) I didn’t have a swimming pool. I didn’t know anyone who did. A pool was for people on TV. It just wasn’t my reality. The only pool I saw growing up was at the YMCA (and that was about 2-3 times). We just went to the beach.
 
Even when we lived in Atlanta (no one had a pool) and started our family and bought a house, a pool never entered my mind. However, my husband did grow up with a pool and always talked about the good ole pool days! I was still like, “That’s cool – but whatever.” (My mind still couldn’t get there, it was too big for me. Out of my reach).
 
Before
 
Well, when we moved to Florida – he said when we buy a house he wants a pool. I told him, “I don’t NEED a pool!” I was serious. I just wanted a screen because bugs run this state! He kept saying he wanted a pool. We then agreed that if we pay off all of our debt, we will get a pool AND PAY CASH FOR IT.
 
Welp!! We paid off our debt December 2019. I promise, I thought he forgot about that pool nonsense! LOL!! In June 2020, he started inviting people over our house for pool estimates. He was ready. Well, we signed our pool contract in July 2020, they didn’t start construction until November 6th and are finally finished now (around the 1st week of February). 
 
It was an emotional process for me because as I child, I couldn’t conceive this so as an adult I was still not able to. (If that makes sense). However, since my husband did have one – it was no big deal to him. A pool for me was far fetched, out of my reach but as I stand on this deck – it just reminds me how good God is and how he can bless me really give me more than I can ask or think. I did NOT want this pool, but NOW I’m so excited to have it and glad my husband kept going for what he wanted for this family.
 
After
 
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve stood on this patio as it was being built amazed. I kept saying, “I have a pool! My kids will have a swimming pool!” And it’s PAID IN FULL! This is big for me.
 

Video of our entire process:

 

 
 
 
 
 
View this post on Instagram
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

A post shared by Bernetta (@bernettastyle)

We used Tampa Bay pools. What would normally take 4-6 weeks to build a pool, took 10-12 weeks because of COVID and a huge demand for pools. We had 3 other people in our community getting pools at the same time. Everyone used different companies. 
 
Would I recommend Tampa Bay Pools? I would. I give them a solid B. Why? Because we learned later that the gentleman who sold us the pool gave us options he gave everyone and left things out (that we actually wanted and would have paid for) that he also left out with others. There was also a period of time when no one did any work on our yard for 4 weeks with no notice, calls or updates. I actually thought they took our month and dipped. I called up there and they showed up the same day.
 
The left our yard a complete mess. The man they sent to clean up mentioned that it’s never that bad. Other than that, the end result was beautiful. After it’s over, you have to attend pool school – they teach you how to take care of your pool. 
 

My favorite part

The screen. I love it. I’ve wanted a screen since I moved to Florida. It keeps the bugs, frogs, mosquitoes and the lizards out. Also, its a few degrees cooler under the screen versus the direct sun light. I can sit outside in the morning now and drink my tea or at night and sip on a glass of wine and still enjoy the stars! OMG, I can’t wait. 
 
We’ve already been in the pool (it’s winter, but we have a pool heater and it’s in the 70s and 80s here). Everyone is loving it. 
 
I have a pool y’all! 
Family

Our Packing with Purpose Suitcase Donation Drive Success Story

This October (2020) we started the campaign Packing with Purpose Suitcase donation drive. The purpose of the campaign was to give fully packed carry-on suitcases to foster children aging out of the system here in Tampa and other parts of Florida.

Why give suitcases? Many times when children age out of foster care (age 18), they leave with their things in a plastic bag. If they do not have housing available when they age out, they immediately become homeless. We wanted them to at least have a new suitcase to carry their things in and everyday essentials to get started.

Our goal was to pack 25 suitcases.

Thanks to the generosity of so many people, we raised enough to pack close to 100 brand new suitcases! 100!!!!!!!!!!! That is 4x the amount of our goal.

We were able to donate to:

  • Camelot Community Care – 58 Suitcases
  • Project Bridge Central – 20 Suitcases
  • Grow into You Foundation – 5 Suitcases
  • MaRae’s House – 2 Suitcases
  • 360 Center for Chance – 2 Suitcases
  • Mending Hearts – 4 Suitcases

Thank you to everyone that donated to Packing with Purpose. These teens were so blessed by everything that you gave. Unfortunately because of privacy concerns, I wasn’t able to actually get pictures with the teens but I did get a few pics with the caregivers as they accepted the suitcases. They shared that as the teens get their suitcases and want to take pics, they will send them our way.

Check out the video of the entire process:  

 

What I’m Most Proud Of

We did this entire campaign with the donations of everyday people that care about the well-being of these teens. We didn’t get any donations from big brands (well, one big brand), stores, or companies. Just amazing everyday people who care! Thank you again!

Shout out to Izzy & Liv! Izzy & Liv is a major brand that did donate 25 each of 8-9 items from their store. It was the only brand that donated. The items are amazing. Unfortunately, they came after the suitcases were packed and already given away. So, we plan to partner with another organization and give them away to some amazing teen girls.

If you want to donate cash towards the next Packing with Purpose Suitcase donation drive & The Knighten Project please donate here.

A big thank you to my team Shatavia Elder, Nadine Samardzija & Aseelah Knighten. These three ladies met and helped me throughout the entire process. We could not have completed this project without their ideas, time, input, and suggestions. Thank you, ladies!

I’d also like to thank Fox News Tampa for featuring us on What’s Right in Tampa. Being on Fox News helped us go beyond our goal and will allow us to make even more dreams possible in the near future.

Family

My 2020 Year in Review & Lessons Learned

I’m sure no one in December 2019 knew what was coming in 2020 (well, Trump did) when we all made plans, goals, and resolutions.

2020 changed everything. 2020 changed me.

This year has certainly been a roller coaster in every meaning of the word. A year unlike any other. I am sad that over 300,000 in the US & millions worldwide who died of COVID and I feel for the families who also lost loved ones. 

I’ll share some of my lessons at the end of this post, but first I wanted to share some personal highlights for me in 2020.

In March, we were put on lockdown and no one knew what the next few days, weeks or even months were going to look like. As I stand here on December 30th writing this post, I can say I’m grateful to be here.

January – My birthday always starts out the year. It always gives me time to reflect on where I am and make new goals. I started out 2020 with my best friend, Aseelah, in St. Augustine, FL. Her birthday is 3 days later so we decided to do a girls trip and explore somewhere new. 

Traveled to Atlanta (little did I know this would be my last plane ride for the year) to the Game Plan 2020 conference. A great boost to jump start my year with business goals. 

February – Kobe Bryant passed away and shook us all. I think we all felt like we knew him personally as we watched him grow into an amazing athlete and father over the years. This tragedy put some things into perspective and even made it more apparent to make sure the people I love know I love them.

During this month, I also had the opportunity to speak to over 100 high school students about Financial Literacy at PwC in partnership with the Junior Achievement. 

March

I attended my first Podcast conference in Orlando (thanks to Dani Faust) in anticipation of my own Podcast, Dream Girl, Dream!

Virtual school started this month after spring break. It was our new reality because of the pandemic. I have children in elementary, middle and high school, so having all three at home and managing it all was a real experience. 9 months in, I think we finally got the hang of it. 

April – 1st Viral Video – I put together a group of amazing women 40 and over to do a Don’t Rush Challenge Video. 82,000 views! 

May l launched my Podcast, Dream Girl, Dream!

June Bailee launched her own nail polish line.

August

We did some renovations in our home and got new floors. I love them!

My family was invited to Animal Kingdom and a stay in their newest resort. It was a welcome distraction to what was going on around us. 

Before school started we planned a Mother Daughter Girls Trip with my best friend and her daughter. We took our girls to Siesta Keys for the weekend and had a blast.

Chadwick Boseman died – another living legend whose death rocked us to the core. #wakandaforever

September

After 9 months of not seeing my grandmother, we took a road trip to check on her. We had a great weekend and it was bitter sweet. I pray I get to see her again soon. 

Celebrated 17 years of marriage in Naples, FL.

October

Spoke at a virtual conference

1st Viral Reel with my BFF and daughter. Over 117K views on IG Reels (click image to play)

The Knighten Project (my non-profit) started collecting items for our Packing with Purpose suitcase donation drive. It was a huge success. Read about it here.

November

A few of my closest friends came to Tampa and we rented an Air BNB downtown. We had a ball just exploring Tampa and catching up. It was a much needed Girls Trip.

More renovations were done in our home, this time it was our cabinets.

December

Cut my hair and went blonde. I wanted it shorter actually but this will have to do. 

I signed a contract to work with a major company in the Diabetes Community to create content, videos, speaking engagements, and media opportunities. 

We completed Packing with Purpose. Our goal was 25 suitcases, we raised enough for 91 suitcases and gave them to 6 local Tampa organizations.  (Click the video to see our experience)

Brand partnerships for 2020:

  • Arnold Bread
  • Sunny D
  • Moms Rising
  • Moms Vote
  • Abbott Freestyle Libre

Oh, the hubs and I joined a property investment group, with hopes of buying our first property in 2021. I also started trading options this year. Wow, that experience has been full of ups and downs, but I’m learning new things with each trade. I’ll write a separate post on that. 

A few lessons I learned this year:

  • If you love someone, tell them. Say everything you’ve ever wanted to say because you may never get another opportunity. 
  • If you want to do something, do it. What are you waiting for? The power of now has never been more important. I’ve started eating on my wedding China. I’ve had it for 17 years and it just sat in the cabinet waiting for “that special occasion”. Well, lunch became special enough for me. 
  • Love shouldn’t hurt. If a friend or someone special tells you that they love you, their actions shouldn’t show you the opposite. Someone that loves you should NOT hurt you on purpose.
  • Social media is too much. Although I’m on social media often because I’m an influencer (and I get paid to post things), I’ve actually slowed down posting. I don’t have to show everything, tell everything, or comment on everything. This year I’ve concentrated on putting the phone down and being more present in the moment. 
  • Family is everything. During this pandemic, families spent more time together under the same roof than ever. It either brought you closer together or tore you all farther apart. The time together definitely deepened my relationships with my children. I’m grateful for that because my oldest will be off to college in 2 years, so this time is precious. Oh the conversations we’ve had.
  • Health is wealth (although I knew this before the pandemic).
  • Don’t be afraid to say goodbye to something that is no longer good for you or to you. 
  • Would you rather live an uncomfortable truth or a comfortable lie?

What did 2020 show you?