“He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.”

Joshua 15:2

Yesterday was the spring equinox and I’m so thankful to be in the season of spring! Winter is my favorite season, but it had its moment and I was truthfully ready for its departure. A girl can only serve up so many sweater and boot looks before she needs something fresh.

Enter in the season of mules, dresses and skirts (sans tights), and some more skin. 

I was in the midst of working on something for you guys, when I had an overly deep thought about how my blog and business are growing and getting better, simultaneously as the seasons do. Note: we're only going up from here,  but do note summer is the worst. There, I said it. And from there, I decided to center today’s post around how as we grow as people, we have to do a bit of cleaning to make sure growth is consistent.  

I've said this before, but I like to think of us all as flowers. Seeds were dropped and us growing, is us blooming. We may have a few harsh conditions here and there, we may have to "repot" to different locations for better growth, but bloom we must. It is imperative that we do our best to bloom to the best of our abilities in order to bless the world - because you are a blessing to the world - with our gifts. 

This season, I'm helping my blooming by investing in my advertising, taking chances, and forming a routine to catalyze my creative juices. Gone are the days of waiting for inspiration to hit me, I'm going after it every day now. For what I want this blog to grow into, it is imperative that I give it more than what I've been doing. The habits of procrastination and not taking things seriously are no longer welcomed. Those and a few others had to get cut off.

My cleaning looks different than yours. Because we are two different people, with different goals, it should be different. Nonetheless, I want to encourage you to put your best foot forward this season and try to make a change that will serve you for the better. I challenge you to prune the good that you do and cut off anything, or anyone, that hinders you from blooming as beautifully as possible. 

Outfit Deets
Bodysuit: H&M | Jeans: Levi's | Shoes: Zara (A STEAL)| Phone Case: The Daily Edited

“The plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance, but everyone who is hasty comes to poverty.”
Proverbs 21:5
Long time no see...well post actually!

I took some time off from #SydatCity for a little over a week and it was such an amazing decision. I’ve read some, planned a lot, and lived as just Sydney. A lot was done leisurely, but majority was done for the blog in the grand scheme of things. When I take care of me and allow myself to have time to be my best, everything I produce will come from a better version of myself. The benefits of self-care! Nonetheless, because I tend to overshare,  I wanted to let y’all know what drove me to understand I need a break and what I did in the meantime.
It all started with Instagram. As my most used social media platform, I’m on there constantly and that’s probably issue number one. Being on there so often allows me to be consumed with so much creativity, it’s kinda od. I was seeing so much amazing content, cool story templates, well organized feeds, and lots of quality work, which was nice, but also a bit discouraging.

It made me look at what I was producing and measure it up against others. This sounds like the comparison game, but I saw it more as a reality check because I knew I wasn’t giving it my best. That’s one thing I will say was a plus, I knew I needed to up my game because I saw that I wasn’t putting my best foot forward. Thanks to cool girls who were bringing it, I was able to take a look at my work and identify areas I felt unsure of;  My branding was a bit all over the place and I often time felt my self committing a content creator no-no: I was posting just to post.

There was no serious structure and I didn’t like that. So instead of unfollowing everyone, I decided to step back and regroup. I wanted to realign with my relaunch from the beginning of the year going forward. I now have plans and ideas and I’m so excited to up my presence BIG TIMEI’ve also made the decision to allow my why to be a big focal point of my brand. As someone who believes in signs, I got too many about people identifying their why to ignore. 

My why:
To encourage people to chase their dreams. To connect people to God so that they may accept His love for them and walk as their best selves. To advocate for inclusion and diversity within the fashion and beauty industry. To support minority women in the realms of art, education, and entrepreneurship.

I want it to be evident what I stand for when people read my blog, look at my pictures ( READ the captions), as well as meet me. I feel that as of lately, I’ve blogged somewhat on autopilot- with the exception of my latest piece, which I LOVED writing- and that doesn’t serve my purpose at all. In taking some time off, I feel that I’ve done a lot of mental work in remembering what I want out of their whole blogging journey. I want to end with the reminder that its okay to feel stuck or unsure, as long as you keep allowing yourself to bloom, it'll all work out. 

Dress + Shoes: Zara | Sunglasses: Quay x DESI

I am not angry. I am tired.

I had a tough day the other day. I read this fantastic essay on The Everygirl and it stuck with me. I chased the authored down and thanked her for writing such a real piece that anybody black I feel could connect with. It made me happy to see a piece like that was featured on site I frequent daily, but it also had me thinking about the sad fact that black girls everywhere deal with the same thing, having our blackness magnified for no other reason than being black.

Some women get it because of their name, some because of their hair, others possibly due to their bodies, but I know more than enough who experience this, usually unwanted, attention the comes simply from being. That hurt my mind to think that is the reality we are subjected to.
I know more than enough who experience this, usually unwanted, attention the comes simply from being.
The context of SaDiedrah's article is navigating corporate america with a black sounding name. My name being Sydney eliminates me from the conversation, but her ask for us to, "Imagine having to always think that you will be scrutinized in the workplace, not just because you a Black, but because you are a Black woman in a white, male-dominated environment." made me do a mental slow clap. 

Fun fact: I am one of four black employees at my job. It doesn't bother me much because I work with nice people who have been very kind to me, but as a progressive, I take notice. I'm also one of the handful of women, so I feel it as not only being black, but as a black woman. And the "it" I'm referring to is simply the underlying motion that you are a minority who is being observed and possibly measured up to your counterparts.

My womanhood isn't magnified as much as my blackness is. I've truthfully haven't felt anyone look at me or question anything related to my femininity, but the same can't be said for how I carry my blackness. I am mindful of what I wear because I have curves, I use a "work voice" because the setting is different, and I second-guess some decisions like my nails and hair because I know questions or comments will come. 

I'm aware that when being around someone new, curiosity will arise, especially if that new person is completely different from you. But I can't help but hate that so many girls - black girls - have to deal with this on a daily. At work, at school, even at simple places like the grocery store. It's a lot to handle when you think about what its like to grow up in modern day America, where a wall is already built (shade) against you due to your skin tone, and you still have to navigate life going after all you deserve because you still deserve no matter what anyone thinks. The fight isn't fair, but it is necessary. 

When things bother me, I have to talk them out, so I did with my parents. They both understood my frustration and my dad in particular challenged me to be me. I'm going to do that regardless, but it was just upsetting to know the reality. To see the reality first hand and to actually go through the things you read about and think,"Oh that'll never happen to me". It's tiring to know this is the narrative thats found its way into so many young women's lives.  
The fight isn't fair, but it is necessary. 
I'm at a dead end with a good idea of how to combat things aside from being yourself. You literally have to decide to show up as the best version of you every single day, answering questions with pride and honesty, because you stand behind your decisions. Accepting yourself as you are wholly because you know this is how you were made and the things you embrace from your culture make you proud. And if you need a little motivation from "Daddio and the City", check one of his messages below. 

You guys, I am officially obsessed with this look! I was taking a risk and doing something that I love to see fashion girls wear and that's pajama's in public

I think I'm pretty ballsy when it comes to trying new things, but when I had to idea to actually wear my satin pj's out of the house, I was a bit nervous. What would my fashion council (mom and granny) think? Is this something I should leave to the other girls? Will I be able to pull it off? Luckily, I got out of head and went ahead with the whole thing. P.S. They loved it, I shouldn't, and as you can see, I DID pull it off

There was a bit of research I did before trying this trend. I studied people who've previously committed to it and read a few articles on how to properly pull it off. The general consensus was to elevate the look with accessories -insert pearls- and go with a dressier shoe -pulls out heels.  A print was a recommendation, but I think a solid set could be just as cute if the fit is right. That was something else I was a bit nervous about because I am so short, but the heels were able to help that. 

Photos by Bluufox
Pajamas: Victoria Secret | Shoes: Michael Kors | Sunglasses: Marc Jacob

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We are slowly moving along 2019 and I'm in such a sweet mood as we progress into one of my favorite months. Aside from Black History Month, February holds the loveliest days of the year aka Valentine's Day! 

In true Sydney fashion, I am very excited! I have no plans what so ever, but I do have some looks in mind that I may wear.

Berkshire is a classic brand that has been around long enough for my grandmother to know of. It was actually through her and my mother that I even became familiar with them when I was a young child. I remember they were the hosiery of choice when it came time to go o church or any occasion where leg wear was appropriate. NOTE: I find leg wear appropriate all of the time.
Aside from wearing them on special occasions, I have incorporated the stylish leg wear into everyday wear. Being a pretty feminine dresser, I absolute adore the look of tights with dresses and skirts. They even have socks that add a little flair subtly. You can pretty much find balance of both quality and style - the ideal combo for any accessory. 

I'm happy to have been able to build a relationship with the brand on my own basis. Syd and the City has worked with them a few times in terms of them being ind enough to send me a few styles to up my looks. NOW, I am working with them to bring one of YOU some of their beloved hosiery! 
 On February 1st, I will be hosting a competition on my Instagram and Facebook for a lucky person to win TWO pair of Berkshire hosiery! All details will go live on Friday at 1pm, so be sure to look out and good luck! 

Photography by Bluufox
Hosiery provided by Berkshire
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