I Can’t Believe It’s December!

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adventure / Baltimore / Christmas / Family / food / Lifestyle / Uncategorized

I can’t believe it’s December! I swear it was just the 4th of July yesterday!

Time is flying by, and the holiday’s will come and go in a flash. To make sure I’m being intentional with my time, I wrote down a few activities and traditions that I don’t want Aaron and I to miss out on this year.


1.)Miracle on 34th Street + Hot Chocolate from The Charmery.

We’ll grab hot chocolate from the Charmery, and then walk a short distance to see the decorations.

If you live close to Baltimore, this is a holiday-must-do.

2.) Enchanted in DC

I can not wait to go see this! Click here then you’ll understand my excitement.

3.) Candle making class at Knit Soy Metal.

I just really want Aaron and I to do this class together.

4.) Dinner at Filomena

Last year, Aaron and I visit Filomena in DC for the first time and it was magical. We decided then and there that this (having dinner together at Filomena’s during the Christmas Holiday) would be “our” tradition together. Over dinner we imagined “daydreamed” about bringing our own children there one day (if that’s in our future.) This will be our second year going and I’m very excited. This year will be even more special because we are now engaged. One step closer to making this officially “our families” tradition. Click here to watch my IGTV video of our experience last year.

5.) Buy a real Christmas Tree

Seriously, we need to make time for this. Last year we waited too late!

6.)Christmas Village Baltimore

We visited the Christmas Village in Philly last year but I’m ready to enjoy this authentic German Holiday market event here in Baltimore! This Christmas Village will run through Christmas Eve.

7.) Gather friends to visit a small business and #shopsmall together.

My friends and I want to support a small business together, so we are planning to meet at Café Poupon for coffee and then walk over to The Peanut Shoppe to purchase local treats for loved ones. Cafe Poupon & The Peanut Shoppe are both small businesses that hand-make-in-house most all their goodies.

8.) Annual Couture Christmas Tree’s @ Lord Baltimore 

The Lord Baltimore’s Annual Couture Christmas Tree’s will be on displayed in their lobby until January 10th.

9.) Visit at least three (3) holiday markets.

Holiday markets in Baltimore happen every weekend during the month of December. It’s nearly impossible to miss out.  Follow me on Instagram @discovercharmcity and watch my stories where I plan to post market flyers as I see them.

10.) Go last minute holiday shopping with my family at Tyson Corner Mall.

This has been a tradition for over 20+ years! It’s literally my favorite.

December will fly by if you don’t pay attention. Make sure you take a few moments and write down a few things you would like to do before you look up and its too late.

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All Pictures by Becky Stavely taken at Liberty Harbor East in Baltimore, MD

Until next time,




Time to Activate: Tips on how to regain focus!

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Lifestyle / Uncategorized

Recently, I woke up and had to have a serious conversation with myself.

Do you ever have to do that?

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“Come on Alysha! Stop being lazy.”  I’ve had this conversation with myself before, and I’m sure I will have it again. I’m learning to be more patient with myself, but I also know the signs of when I’m slacking. If you’ve ever been in the same boat, I hope you’re learning to be kind to yourself as well, along with also using healthy techniques to snap out of that lazy unmotivated funk!

Here are a few tips I use to help me regain my focus. Maybe they’ll work for you too!

When I feel myself losing focus and making my life harder than it has to be, I have to refer back to these techniques.


The moment you’ve decided enough is enough and its time to reactivate, take a moment or two to reflect on how you got to this point. It’s important to think about your accomplishments so far (be kind), but also be honest with yourself. What’s the real reason behind you feeling lazy or uninspired? Distinguish if you need rest, or if you are actually being lazy. Always listen to your body, but if you know you’ve just lost focus, then that means its time to have that sometimes hard pep talk with yourself.

2.)Make up your mind to get (and stay) DISCIPLINED. Sometimes you just have to look in the mirror and give yourself a stern talking to. After that pep-talk, put your favorite hype music playlist on and get moving.

3.) Refocus- It’s something about writing out a list that really helps me refocus my energy. Making a list of things that need to be accomplished within the week, really gets me moving. Setting a hard deadline for myself on even simple task like: Cleaning my room, wiping the counters, organizing my makeup, really motivates me to tackle other things. Of course I may have a ton of other “important” task that need to get completed, but focusing on a few of the “smaller” task at a time helps me find my bearings and  prioritize.

4.) Get inspired. Use social media for good. Visit pages that focus on positive ideas and motivational quotes. This seriously always helps me. I look at all the #bossbabequote pages out there. The messaging speaks to me!

5.) Just do whatever you gotta do! Go workout. Meditate on it. Pray on it. Call your friend that will be truthful with you and put some fire under your butt. Read a few inspirational blog post. Listen to a podcast.

6.) Double Down. Don’t play yourself. If you’re gonna do it, then do it.

After you get refocused and while you’re in a good place, make an action plan for the next time you are feeling unmotivated and just plain lazy. It happens to the best of us, but we can’t allow it to slow us down for too long. Having a plan to combat these funky moods is the only way to go.

Until Next Time…



Spa’rty at Live Casino Hotel & Spa

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My friends and I booked a half day “Spa’rty” experience at Live Casino Hotel & Spa and had the most relaxing day ever. Watch this video to see it all!

Self-care can come in a lot of different forms, and my favorite kind of activity is spending time with my girlfriends. I mean real quality time catching up, motivating, and uplifting each other to continue pushing towards our goals.

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Gifts For Your Practical Friend!

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Discover Charm City practical gift guide

I’m the girl that likes receiving gift cards for my birthday and Christmas because then I can go get something I really like or need. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate any gift given, but only a few people really understand my style, so I’d rather make it easy for the people around me and request gift cards.

Every year my parents ask me what I want for Christmas, and I always say “CASH please or make a payment towards my student loans/debt” – haha, but seriously, that’s the best  gift to me. Getting rid of my debt would be the ultimate gift! Read More

Live! Casino + Hotel

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Initially when I found out that Live! Casino was opening a hotel, I turned my nose up at the idea. I just couldn’t wrap my head around how a hotel could be relaxing if it was connected to a casino at Arundel Mills.

Boy, was I wrong! I was invited to the grand opening, and of course I wanted to be nosy and see what all the hype was about so I attended. During the hotel tour, I was BLOWN away at how elegant it was. I knew right then and there that I would have to do a staycation at the Live! Casino & Hotel.

The opportunity came and I was able to book a one night stay at the hotel, relax at the spa, see Tracy Morgan live, and eat at The wonderful Prime Rib.

The experience was awesome! I was skeptical at first thinking that I wouldn’t be able to fully relax because of the casino, but that just wasn’t the case at all. As soon as I stepped into the hotel the calm atmosphere immediately helped my stress level decrease.

The rooms were spacious, chic, and very stylish. To best suit your needs, the hotel offers different types of room options.

Make sure to when you book your stay you also schedule at least one rejuvenating treatment at Live! Casino Hotel’s beautiful spa. The experience was absolutely fabulous. I wanted to stay there all day! I 100% plan on booking another full day of relaxation at the spa very soon.

After the spa we went back to our room and got dressed for the night. We decided to go eat at The Prime Rib which is located in Live! Casino. Again, one of the awesome things about the casino is that when you’re on the actual casino floor you’re amongst everyone having a good time, all the hustle and bustle, the lights, and the music, but is soon as you enter The Prime Rib its like you’re in a different place altogether. The food was delicious and the service was excellent per usual!

After dinner we went to see Tracy Morgan on the Live! Event Center. The space seats about 4,000 people! Live! Casino schedules exciting shows, so check out their schedule to stay in the loop.

Once the show came to an end, we decided grab a cocktail and play our luck! It was so fun to play at the casino for a bit.

It was an incredible feeling to be able to walk to our room and not have to worry about driving home after such a great night.

I slept extremely well that night and even slept in the next day. I finally got the rest I needed thanks to Live! Casino & Hotel. I’ll definitely be going back.

Until next time…




10 Experiences Before 32

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adventure / Baltimore / Health / Lifestyle / Uncategorized / Wine tasting


I can’t believe I will be turning 32 years old in two months. November 8th to be exact and honestly I’m getting very excited. I think its because 31 was a rough year for me. I’m finally crawling out of a weird funk. Don’t get me wrong, I had some amazing things happen over the last year, but my overall good mental health wasn’t always there. Nor do I expect to be high on happiness all the time, but I know myself well enough to understand things weren’t quite right this year. I’m on a journey of living a healthier lifestyle, being more discipline, and focusing on self care. I’m feeling so much better and ready to have a kick-ass year.

In the next two months there are a few experiences I want to have. Nothing extravagant, but activities I’ve been putting off doing for too long for no particular reason other than not being disciplined enough to execute. Enough is Enough, before November 8th, 2018, these 10 experiences hopefully will be off my to-do-list.

1.) Take a spin class. I will probably hate myself after, but I am determined to at least try it.  COMPLETED 9/8/18: 

2.) Walk to the top of the Washington Monument. I mean how can I say I love Mt. Vernon and I’ve never actually been to the top of the monument.

3.) Take a cooking class a Schola

4.) Go to a show at An Die Musik

5.) Mezcal tasting at Clavel

6.) I want to do a brew tour around Baltimore. I want to visit Suspended Brewing Company,Peabody Heights Brewery, Charm City Meadworks, Diamondback Brewing Co, Monument City Brewing, & Oliver Brewing Company. I’m always at Union or Waverly (because I love them) but it’s time for me to spread my wings haha. I consumed products from most of these breweries, but I want to actually go visit their house.

7.) Wine tasting tour. I’m leaning towards doing a mini vacay in Frederick, MD and visit wineries out there.

8.) Get a facial. I really need to make this a part of my regular skin care routine.

9.) Have a feast with friends at Cazbar and attend their Belly Dancing Show.

10.) Host a donation drive.  Completed 9/18 

I’ll keep you posted as I knock these activities off the list one-by-one.

Until next time,




Motivation vs Discipline

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Baltimore / Health / Lifestyle / Uncategorized

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Discipline over motivation in my mantra for the rest of Summer 2018. Hell, actually it’s my mantra until it is so embedded in my everyday life that I don’t even think about it anymore.

Developing more discipline will help me complete the tasks in my day-to-day that normally I try to make an excuse to push to another day. It’s getting ridiculous! I can’t live like this anymore. I want to level up, accomplish more, and use my time more wisely. Focusing on discipline is the only thing that can help me. Read More

Creating Positive Vibes

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About one year ago, I posted a similar piece about small positive changes that make big differences in your day, and I thought we all probably needed a friendly reminder. Right? Ok, ok, I really just needed to be reminded that these few tips really help my day stay on a positive track.

Maybe these small changes will truly impact your day in a positive way too.

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1. Try waking up one (1) hour earlier than you normally do to start your day. When I say get up, I don’t mean use that hour to check your Instagram feed or answer emails either. Want more? Click to continue reading!

Self-Care Staycation at Hotel Monaco, a Kimpton Hotel

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Before I go any further with my staycation post. I have to be honest… for the last two years, I’ve always said to others that I’m the laziest blogger EVER. Truth is, I’m not. I mean, I was starting to think something was seriously wrong with me because I have a million awesome ideas written down and I would never execute! I’d start writing post and either I’d complete it, never post, and it would just sit in my draft box or I’d start a post and never finished it. Why do I do this to myself? I’d post basic content just to having something on the website but nothing really that great. I’d often ponder vblogging or starting a podcast, but my procrastination I knew would just bleed over. Well finally, I came to the realization that I am just procrastinating on not taking the next leap. I’m not sure if I am scared or what’s holding me back from making the next move. Am I nervous? Probably so… I mean I like where I am now, BUT I know I am supposed to be doing something bigger. It’s starting to keep me up at night. Who knows where I will end up? Only the Big Guy Upstairs knows the ending to my story. I just know I have to commit and the TIME IS NOW. So from now on, my mind set is to treat at my blog as my personal diary that I want to share with anyone who is willing to read.

So, on to the post that hopefully will be the beginning of many more….

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Last Minute Shopping Guide: Historic Charles Street Edition

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adventure / Baltimore / Christmas / Family / food / Foodie / Friends / Gifting / Holiday Season / Lifestyle / Uncategorized

You did it again after you promised yourself last year you’d do better… you’ve waited until the very last-minute to complete your holiday shopping. Last-minute or not, don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place. Below are few thoughtful gift ideas that all can be found within the Historic Charles Street Corridor.
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