Say Hello to My New Car, Lucy!

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Hi everyone!! I know it’s been a while since I wrote my last post. I had a great running start going towards the new year. I bought myself a new car! Finally!!! I decided to purchase a brand new 2018 Subaru Crosstrek Limited with Moonroof and Navigation system at the Bertera Subaru of Hartford in Connecticut. This is a new chapter of my life. I’m planning to go on road trips and more adventures with my brand new baby! I’m slowly adjusting to the “adulthood”. I’m at the stage in my life where I can afford to buy a new car for myself.  I made a few sacrifices along the way and also rearranged my priorities to reassure myself that I could afford a brand new car. This is my first step in being financially independent! 🙂

Shopping for a new car was not easy. It was very confusing. Of course, I didn’t do all of this alone, my boyfriend and my family helped me throughout this process.  I created a list of three or four cars that met my needs and fell within my budget. I compared a 2018 Toyota Rav4,  a 2017 Honda CRV, and a 2018 Subaru Crosstrek. I did a lot of due diligence and research on those car models. By doing this due diligence, this helped my sister and I tremendously during the negotiation process.We went to four different dealerships. We developed a concrete plan in which made it easy for us to get an awesome deal.

Finally, after test driving all the different car models and after doing all of the research,  I knew which car was perfect for me! And I picked the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek Limited with Moonroof and Navigation System. I called this car, Lucy! And yes she is a girl! Isn’t she stunning!

The first time I laid my eyes on Lucy, I fell in love with her exterior features. She looks so sporty and chic! She is ready to go on adventures with me! This car can drive in any weather condition because this is “ALL-WHEEL DRIVE”! I have a slight fear of tight corner spaces, therefore this car model size is the ideal size for me. This car is a mix between of an SUV and a regular sedan vehicle. It is a crossover.  It has enough room and space for me to feel comfortable when I’m driving. This car has a lot of personalities filled with elevated exterior and interior features. There is a navigation system, blind spot sensors, and emergency communication system, blue-tooth for wireless phone connectivity, heated seats for the harsh winter climates, power moonroof, Harmon Kardon entertainment system, and a backup camera. And the best part is this car has a remote starter!!! This is a huge lifesaver for me because I can survive during the winter now….especially when I live in Connecticut!! The winter came be horrible over here! The car drives very smooth. The navigation system and entertainment features are simple to navigate through. I cannot find anything negative to talk about my new baby! I’m so obsessed!

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I’m happy I bought my car at Bertera Subaru of Hartford in Hartford, CT. My salesperson name was Rich. He deserves a special shout out as well!! He did a terrific job finding me the perfect car for me!  His managers and supervisors were welcoming and entertaining. I would say he went above and beyond to take care of me. He even gave me free weather mats for my car! Rich did listen and answered all of my questions and my concerns. I’m glad to be a part of the Bertera Subaru Family! To anyone who is shopping for a new or pre-owned Subaru, you should definitely come down to Bertera Subaru of Hartford!

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Here are my best tips and resources for buying a car:

  1. How much can you afford? A rule of thumb: If you’re planning to take out a loan to pay for your car, your car payment shouldn’t be more than 20% of your paycheck. If you have a tight budget, you may want to spend even less… Perhaps check out used or pre-owned cars.  Keep it in mind used cars will need a little extra attention from time to time: may need to change new tires and maintenance. Also, don’t forget to factor in fuel and insurance when researching to buying a car.
  2. Build a target list of used car and new cars- I suggest making a list of three or four cars that meet your needs and fall within your budget. For example, I compared, Toyota, Hondas, and Subaru.
  3. Check car prices- prices are driven by part by where you’re shopping. You’ll find used cars in used-cars sections of new-car dealerships, independent used-car lots, used-car retailers such as Carmax and websites where private-party sellers list their cars. You’ll find new cars on dealership’s website where they will list all of the inventory for new cars.
  4. Check the vehicle history report. This is an important step. If the car you’re looking at has a bad history report, the sooner you know the better. Autocheck and Carfax are the best-known sources for vehicle history reports.
  5. Kelley Blue Book – This is a great site to look for expert car reviews, new and used car price values, car incentive programs, and etc.
  6. Truecar  – This is an easy resource to research on all of the car prices and car inventory in your area or any location and also this site can show you savings on both new & used cars.
  7. Once you find a good perspective car, do not run out to see it. Contact a salesperson or the seller first. This is a good way to establish a relationship with the seller and verify the information about the car. Make sure you put together a list of questionnaires for the seller to answer. It’s better to wait to ask about the price of the car. Once you see the car, you can tie your offer to its condition.
  8. Test-drive the car – the best way to know if this is the right car and model for you. It’s also a good way to assess this car’s current conditions. Look out for any distractions and focus on the car.
  9. Have the car inspected- if you like the car, consider having it inspected by a mechanic before you buy the car.
  10. Negotiate a good deal- Negotiating doesn’t have to be a planned out and traumatic experience. If you are reasonable and have a plan, chances are you can make a deal pretty quickly and easily.
  11. Get all of the paperwork and registeration done!

I’m extremely happy about my decision. I can’t wait to make more life decision. I like being an adult!

Farewell 2017: New Year, New Me

 I can’t believe 2017 is over! 2017 has been an emotional roller coaster ride. There were many ups and downs. I couldn’t tell you guys how many times I tried to figure out what I want to do with my life and who I want to be. I felt emotionally exhausted from soul-searching. There were lessons learned. I know I do not want to repeat the similar mistakes again. I noticed some friendships grew and some friendship faded. I decided to cut some people off out of my life who I felt were not important to me or relevant.  They showed me their true colors when I needed them. I’ve acknowledge some people were not meant to be in my life forever, however I appreciated every person who came into my life. Every person has brought me a life lesson. 2017 was also about making big decisions. I have figured out what’s important me and learned how vital my future can be for me. I finally know what I want! I will fight for what I want!

I was able find peace with myself after being depressed for about two years. There were a few moments in my life where I had suicidal thoughts. It was scary to admit, however it’s a great thing I never harm myself in anyway. I was able to pull away from my miserable self. I thought I lost myself,  but I never did. I’ve fought through all the drastic changes in my life, which helped shaped me to become the person who I am destine to be.  I was terrified about how my life will never be same again. I know I can be my own worse enemy, which I’ve acknowledge one of my biggest weakness is being a perfectionist. I’m aware that I am human and my life will never be perfect. No matter how much I want it to be!  I can always try my best in whatever I set my mind into. The year of 2018, I’ll continue to enjoy living my life to the fullest. I can do whatever I want since I don’t have a family or children.

In 2017, I’ve grown to be comfortable of being alone. Sometime I don’t need to have company to have fun. I love spending personal time with me, myself and I. Sometime I rather be at home and binged watch on Netflix in my bed whenever I could. I’ve also learn how important self love can impact on my life. In order for me to find internal love and happiness, I have to start taking care of myself first. I am proud for overcoming my struggles. I can see I have became an mature adult. I’ve transformed into a beautiful flower. I am no longer shy or insecure about myself.  I am strong, confident, and beautiful. I know what I want!


2018 will be the year for me. I can feel it! I can’t wait for what the year will bring me! I will never stop learning and improving myself on a daily basis. I will continue finding new ways to appreciate and love myself. I’m looking forward for new opportunities heading toward my direction. I will not give up on what I have. And I will not give up on myself! I will fight, fight, fight!


My New Year Resolutions:

  1. Take better care of myself: both physically and mentally
  2. Focus on what is important to me
  3. Appreciate the little things in my life
  4. Do more, take more initiatives
  5. Connect and network with new bloggers, influencers & artists
  6. Focus on building my brand by working on more collaborations.
  7. Get out of my shell: Don’t be afraid of feeling uncomfortable
  8. Find more ways to make more money
  9. Travel more, try out new things
  10. Have fun and enjoy my life

 My friend Jacob and I decided to do a fun collaboration a few months ago. We put together a beautiful Fall photoshoot. Jacob did an awesome job creating the short video clip from the photoshoot. The video is posted below. Jacob is very talented at what he does. He is a great photographer and videopgrapher. I always enjoy working with Jacob. All of the pictures came out beautiful. He was able to captured a different side of me, which I never noticed before. It is an incredible feeling to feel care-free and happy again. It is refreshing for me to feel this way!  It is pretty awesome how Jacob was able to capture the feelings I’ve had that day.


This video represent maturity, self love and moving forward with my life. I hope you all can relate to my stories in some ways. I hope you guys enjoy watching this short clip.

Check out Jacob’s website to see more of his awesome collaborations:

https://jacobalexander35.myportfolio.com/

Follow him on Instagram as well!!

@ja_did_it  

&

@forward.films_

Best Holiday Party Drinks & Cocktails

Here are some few options for a perfect holiday party or mixers: You can serve mulled cider, hot chocolate, sparkling drinks and more festive seasonal cocktails for guaranteed fun at your holiday party.

imageHOT CHOCOLATE

You can never go wrong with Hot Chocolate! Have you guys ever tried S’Mores Hot Chocolate!?!?! If you haven’t then you’re missing out for some yummy, chocolatey, and delicious Drink! All you need is mix Hot water and a packet of hot choco then there you go!  You can also use hot milk if you would like! You can add marshmallow, whipped cream, sprinkles or any type of dessert syrup to add some zest! Now  sit back around the fireplace, relax & enjoy!!!

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Cranberry, Orange and Prosecco

For people who are hosting a holiday party or work office party, you can always jazz up your holiday toasts with this simple cocktail. Just simply heat the cranberries with some sugar on the stovetop, let it cool and add to your glass of bubbly or sparkling wine or champagne along with a couple of fresh orange slices.

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Eggnog

You can not forget about Eggnog!!!

Here is a simple Eggnog recipe that I found from Martha Stewart lol:

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Cranberry Sparkler

This is for my fancy ladiess!!! Ruby-red cranberries make an ideal seasonal ingredient star for holiday cocktails. PERFECT for NEW YEAR!

  • 1 1/2 ounces Blackberry Puree
  • 2 ounces white cranberry juice
  • 2 to 3 ounces sparkling water
  • 1 sprig mint, for garnish

Directions

  1. Place blackberry puree and cranberry juice in a champagne flute. Add sparkling water to fill. Garnish with mint.

This is consider as a Shirely Temple that used to make you feel grown-up. Very Cute and festive!

Ingredients

  • 1 cup grenadine
  • 1 liter clear citrus soda, or seltzer
  • 18 maraschino cherries

Directions:

  1. Place 2 cups water in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add grenadine; stir to combine. Pour mixture into two ice-cube trays. Freeze until solid, 2 hours or overnight.

  2. Fill six glasses with grenadine ice cubes. Top with soda. Garnish with cherries, and serve.

gt03novmsl_cider_vertApple-Pie Cider

Serve hot cider spiced like an apple pie. Season your cider with the same spices you would use in a pie-cinnamon, allspice, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg-then heat it up. If you’d like, pour in brandy for adults. Add a cinnamon stick to each mug for stirring.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/4 quarts apple cider
  • 3 tablespoons firmly packed light-brown sugar
  • 7 whole cinnamon sticks, (6 sticks for garnish)
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • Ground cloves
  • Freshly grated nutmeg
  • Salt
  • 1/2 cup Calvados, or other brandy (optional)

Direction:

  1. In a medium saucepan, whisk together cider, sugar, spices, and salt. Bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. Remove from heat; pour in brandy, if desired. Strain into a pitcher; discard solids. Serve in mugs, garnished with cinnamon sticks.

mull ciderMulled Cider

Heat up your holiday meal or any occasion with some steamy apple drink!

  • 2 quarts apple cider (8 cups)
  • 4 strips lemon zest
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 whole star anise (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon whole allspice berries
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan, bring cider, lemon zest, and spices to a boil; cover, and remove from heat. Let steep at least 20 minutes (or up to 4 hours). Ladle carefully into mugs, leaving most of the solids behind.

source: http://www.marthastewart.com/274425/nonalcoholic-holiday-drinks/@center/276958/holiday-entertaining#333846

I hope you enjoy reading these holiday recipes!!!! Happy Holidays everyone!!! And a Happy New Year!!!

xoxo PT

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