Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Music Collective: vol. 20 {Musical Year in Review 2014}

This year has been a beautiful journey for me personally, but it was definitely a roller coaster ride with epic highs and major lows. However, I will say that this has been a phenomenal year in music, both underground and mainstream. Anyone who honestly believes that quality music fails to exist is obviously not very musically inclined, because good music is infinite and its presence is everywhere (not to be confused with the omnipresence that is God). 

For a while now, it's been a tradition to post a summary of the previous year in music, but this is the first time it's ever been quite this massive. Choosing a top 14 anything music wise was the hardest part about curating this particular play list, compiled in no particular order. The easiest category had to be top 4 videos, because I don't watch videos much and I'm more about the concept than the actual song; the hardest part was narrowing my favorite LP releases  of the year down to a list of 14 and choosing just 2 of my favorite tracks from each album.

The 4 categories (Heavy Rotation Songs, Top 4 Videos, Top 4 Mix Tapes, and Best Albums) are full of musical selections that carried me through the times I found myself trapped in darkness and the ones that kept me level-headed during all the good that happened to and around me all year. Although it took me almost a full month to recall the past year of my favorite tunes and spent many mornings in full blown jam sessions making sure I didn't miss a beat, it was definitely worth it. 

Without further ado, I present the finale Music Collective post of 2014, Musical Year in Review, according to moi.

[Disclaimer: This post is not sponsored and all selections are based solely on the growth of my personal music archive throughout the year. Just the same, this collection does not revolve around industry numbers/charts or what is constantly reviewed on mainstream media. However, in no way am I discrediting musicians, artists, and performers who fall into that category. Also, please excuse the lack of reviews for albums I have listed. More album/EP/mix tape/vinyl reviews coming next year...promise.] 

♥ Top 4 Videos:

  1. Simplethings x Miguel
  2. Chandelier x SIA
  3. Maps x Maroon 5
  4. I Got U x Duke Dumont ft. Jax Jones

♥ Heavy Rotation Songs:

1. Fantasy x Alina Baraz & Galimatias
2. What Love Is x Lolawolf
3. It's On Again x Alicia Keys, Kendrick Lamar
4. Religious x Ne-yo
5. Sunday Candy x Chance the Rapper, SoX
6. Elele x Emma Nyra ft. DaVido
7. Set Me Free x Mara Hruby
8. Magic x Coldplay
9.  9 x Willow Smith ft. Sza
10. 3005 x Childish Gambino
11. Lullaby x Chargaux
12. Two Weeks x FKA twigs
13. Touch x Shura
14. Wash it Away x Nahko and Medicine for the People

♥ Top 4 Mix Tapes:

♥ Best Albums of 2014:

  1. Music for the Uninvited - Leon Vynehall
    • St. Sinclaire
    • Be Brave, Clench Fist
  2. Nabuma Rubberband - Little Dragon
    • Pretty Girls
    • Klapp, Klapp
  3. Xscape - Michael Jackson
    • Chicago
    • Slave to the Rhythm
  4. Z - Sza
    • Warm Winds ft. Isaiah Rashad
    • Julia
  5. You're Dead! - Flying Lotus
    • Never Catch Me ft. Kendrick Lamar
    • Moment of Hesitation
  6. Cadillatica - Big K.R.I.T.
    • Pay Attention ft. Rico Love
    • Third Eye
  7. G I R L - Pharrell
    • Lost Queen
    • Gust of Wind
  8. Souled Out - Jhene Aiko
    • To Love & Die ft. Cocaine 80's
    • W.A.Y.S.
  9. Tough Love - Jessie Ware
    • Say You Love Me
    • Champagne Kisses
  10. Under Pressure - Logic
    • Alright ft. Big Sean
    • Metropolis 
  11. Jungle - Jungle
    • Lemonade Lake
    • Time (LXURY remix)
  12. Electrogram - Vinyl Theatre
    • Breaking Up My Bones
    • Gold
  13. Differentology - Bunji Garlin
    • Red Light District
    • Carnival Tabanca
  14. In the Lonely Hour - Sam Smith
    • Money On My Mind
    • Latch (acoustic)
What music was in your (y)ear in 2014? 

♥ @ChymereA

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Self-Love ♡ Sundays | A Season to Thrive

Journal Entry: 12.22.14

We're a couple of days away from Christmas. I'm not exactly festive, but I'm not sad either. Maybe, I'm somewhere in between, and perhaps, not even mid-way. Whatever it is I'm feeling is calm, which is not always the case for me emotionally, so that's a good thing. Just sitting in bed daydreaming about 2015, a brand new cycle of 365 days that I'm pretty anxious to walk into. Optimistic about better days to come.

Today, I opened the happiness jar I started at the beginning of this year. A lot of memories were created in 2014 and reading these little notes to myself reminded me of how incredibly blessed I am. God has been so good and I can't even begin to thank Him/Her enough.

I want this next year to be my season to thrive and I mean that from the bottom of my soul. I cannot expect to transform into the woman I'm designed to be if I'm not making the necessary changes/adjustments first.  It's time to accelerate and get all these dreams off the ground and out of my head into reality. And considering I've only been surrounding myself with positive energy and people who genuinely want to see me win, the only thing stopping me from reaching higher levels is me. 

I am aware that I need to really push pass the self-sabotaging limitations of myself in order to really go after the things I want in life. No more talking, daydreaming, and/or sulking about what I don't have or what I could have done. All I'll ever have is the moments I'm given. God willing, I'll be blessed with opportunities to see many more new years and will find it in myself to truly live each one, always choosing happiness, health, love, creativity, and purpose over everything else. 

I feel like there is something-some kind of magical, magnetic power-that I'm not quite tapping into, but I'm on the brink of somehow reaching that place. I feel myself in the process of attracting beautiful things into my existence. I'm ready for the new year, but is the new year ready for me? Quite frankly, it has no other choice. 

Love always,
♡ // @ChymereA

Pearls of Wisdom: Life is honestly what you make it. We all go through things that make us question if happiness could ever truly be yours, but you must rise above those insecurities and moments of doubt and claim the happiness you deserve. Put in work, because no one is going to do it for you. You are the gateway to a better tomorrow; it's your choice to remain closed or open yourself up to all the wonderful things the universe has made available to you. 


Committing to the self-love journey over the past 6 months on my blog has played a key role in my personal development and my plan is to continue to write through it. I've not only discovered so much about who I am, it's also taught me a lesson of vulnerability and allowing my scars to show. Although these have essentially been love notes to myself, I can only hope that I've inspired someone else along the way. Thank you so much for all the kind and encouraging words and for sending nothing but peace and positive energy my way as I share intimate pieces of my heart and take you on this journey with me. You will never know how much it means to have strangers who uplift you and whose spirits fill/feel you via a computer screen. To the loyal readers and the people who are simply passing through, I thank you for your on going presence and support. ♥ C.A.


Saturday, December 20, 2014


It's been a while since I've done a life updates kind of post and that's been my intention all year-at least the latter portion of it: to just keep quiet about things that are happening in my life and mindful of who I allow into my personal space. Privacy can get to be a foreign concept for this generation, especially bloggers, however there is definitely an art to being social without crossing any lines. Since the end of the year is here, I'd figure I'd come here and share what I'm currently up to, in a format inspired by Indie Byline.

♥ In Love with: love, life, and the infinite possibilities of both. 

♥ Obsessing over: finding a way out of my parents house. My living situation has been a pretty good experience; honestly, there aren't many things to complain about. It has allowed me the time and ability to save money, recollect my thoughts, and calculate my next steps, and I really appreciate all they've done for me since moving back home, but it's time...time for me to spread my wings and embrace adulthood. 

♥ Working On: getting my life together!!! But seriously, between apartment hunting, making sure tuition is covered for next semester, and planning a pretty epic voyage to the motherland [#Ghana2015], there's very little room to work on anything else right now, but I do try to squeeze as much in as possible. I have a few major projects I'll be picking back up in the coming months and hopefully launching before the end of 2015. Stay tuned!

Favorite Visual:  Growing up in a major U.S. city is always fun, because there are always hidden gems to be found over time. Although the area has gained a lot of popularity over the past few years, Little 5 Points has been one of my favorite spots to hang out in my hometown since high school days. It's filled with art, good vibes, and great memories for me personally, new and old. So as I was doing my normal shopping/perusing there recently, I noticed this graffiti art that read 'Trust your struggle.' As many times as I've been to this particular area, I've never recalled ever seeing it. Such a powerful message that resonated with me deeply and incredible timing as well.

♥ Music [favorite sounds]: Flowers x Nujabes

Anticipating :  celebrating NYE with a relatively new group of friends. I'm all about bringing in the New Year on a positive note and surrounding one's self with good energy, so I'm pretty excited about what we have planned.

Watching:  Honestly, I haven't had time to watch much TV. I'm literally behind on everything. I've heard a lot about a show running on Netflix called Don't Trust the B**** in Apt. B, which I just so happen to think is a pretty ironic title, so maybe I'll get into that some over the holidays.

♥ Reading : Sad to say, I haven't been reading much lately either. However, I do have a few books on my radar, including:
  1. 'Deathless' by: Cathervnne M. Valente
  2. 'Coconut' by: Kopano Matlwa
  3. 'Americanah' by: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

♥ Favorite Words:  Trust Your Struggle. I absolutely believe I saw that in plain view, as bold as day, for a reason.

♥ Thinking about: What am I NOT thinking about is the better question, but I guess what stands out the most is live a happy, healthy, beautiful, worry/stress/drama-free lifestyle full of love, purpose, and creativity. Also thinking about the small, consistent steps I'll need to take in the upcoming year that will, essentially, lead me to where I want to be.

Dreaming Of: how much can happen in a year. I look forward to this new cycle of 365 days, yet remembering to remain as present as possible. Hopefully, there will be more gains than losses, more happy times than sad, more love than hate, etc. in the coming year.  In retrospect, this year has been fairly descent to me. I learned so much about myself and the world around me. Good and bad days have passed and I sense that better days are coming, even better than the best days I've had thus far. Optimistic. 

What is life like for you currently??

♥ //  @ChymereA

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Self-Love ♡ Sundays | Sometimes Ambitious

We are all aiming to live an exceptional life, even though our paths to achieving such a life vary. It's in my human nature to wonder if I'm going about life the right way; I believe we all do, which is why the self-help industry in any shape or form continues to capitalize its way through pop culture. Despite all the guides and insight available on how to live life, at some point, we have to figure out for ourselves what success means. For one group, it is a rat race, all competing with one another to attain a certain status and/or level of success. For another group, it's creating opportunities for themselves and following their own bliss. For both, it's a matter of searching for life's peak and attempting to reach ones highest potential. Although I have nothing against people in the first cluster, I absolutely consider myself to be intertwined with the latter.  

The dream chasers. The ones who will stop at nothing to get there, but often times have no clue where to start or how to make the best of what they have in this moment to make things happen...and I'm a huge advocate for making things happen. However, I found myself at a crossroads again, drained from running towards my goals at full speed, and suddenly, not knowing which way to turn or if I should turn at all. I came to a place where I knew the dreams embedded in my heart weren't exactly a stretch of the imagination anymore, but they felt so far away at the same time, therefore the chase became exhausting and I almost lost sight of them. 

One thing I've learned from being in this mind space is how important it is to be in alignment with the things I want. I can't pray for something if my actions are working against whatever it is I'm praying for, but then expect it to manifest.  In that regard, I have to meet God half-way and not expect the universe to do all the work for me. Now I know, in retrospect, to keep my vision clear and plain view, because any time you want something bad enough, it's hard to not keep going. 

I've noticed-in my experiences and that of others-it doesn't pay off to be sometimes ambitions-to sometimes want to be successful or to sometimes want to live a beautiful life-because those sometimes moments always turn into prolonged periods of laziness for most people. In other words, go hard or go home. This is what separates the doers from the dreamers; if you stay in dreamland too long, you'll eventually lose hope in dreams ever coming true. I never want to get to that place.

In a previous [self] love letter, I've written about perception and the realization of ones potential, but this is about knowing what to do once the mental part is resolved. This is about staying disciplined and continuing to go after a dream fearlessly, even in moments of doubt and perspiration. The crossroads are presented to teach us a lesson, not to create an obstacle, at least not one that's impossible to conquer. 

Pearls for the Day:  The law of attraction has a lot to do with movement, not just affirming words and pretty pictures. Imagine the thought of you being granted everything you work for! With that in mind, understand that manifestation involves action. Don't stop at the crossroads to question if you're doing the right thing or not. Just keep moving forward and trust that wherever you roam will lead you somewhere wonderful. 

♡ // @ChymereA


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Music Collective: vol. 19 {The December Mix Tape}

Lately, I've been wanting to create positive energy in the atmosphere and just vibe. Deep down in side, I've also been missing the on again/off again love affair I have with the keys, so with that lingering desire to reconcile, I've been gravitating towards piano-centric melodies as well. Surprisingly enough, I'm pretty much over typical Christmas tunes; they're everywhere. The mellow mood I've literally been in for months musically inspired me to curate today's play list, The December Mix Tape.

+ For more hand picked selections from my personal music collection, browse the archives H E R E. +

    ♥ // @ChymereA

    Sunday, December 7, 2014

    Lofty Dreams

    'Grungy Skyline' | Original Photography by: Chymere Anais
    Have you ever just fallen in love with a place-whether that place is mental or physical-solely based on the vibes and good energy you receive from simply being there? 

    I believe all dreams come with a certain level of compromise as far as what someone is willing to sacrifice in order to make it happen. For instance, I've always envisioned myself living in an antique kind of urban loft, with it's own kind of charm, character, and stunning architectural details. In my mind, it was one that stood out as residential construction, but is nestled quietly in the heart of a breath-taking skyline of a city I will love forever. Finding one that fits all my mental details and budget makes the reality of that dream coming true feel closer than ever. The only stipulation is sharing that space with another person. 

    When I first began the apartment hunting process, not having a roommate was something I was pretty headstrong about. Now, I'm forced to question what it is I'm giving up in order to bring this one dream to life and the conclusion in my mind is privacy, as well as shared responsibility. However, after discussing the pros and cons what could possibly happen in friendship and money matters with my prospective roommate, we came to a mutual conclusion; that the outcome may very well be a positive experience for both of us, so the potential of beauty outweighed fear of the opposite. 

    Needless to say, we both have found an oasis that we both absolutely love. All in due season, I'm certain we'll have the joy of knowing it's officially ours to call home. We'll just have to learn to really be patient during the process and not let anxiety ruin a potentially great opportunity. 

    What have you been daydreaming about lately?

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