2017 WRAP UP

December 20, 2017

This year has definitely been one for the books. From moving to a new state and city, to leaving friends behind and making new ones, I have had my fair share of change and excitement. If you've been following along on this blog for some time, you know that the last 5 years or so haven't been the easiest. I don't think I've suffered more than anyone else, so please don't think that. I know that plenty of people have experienced loss, divorce, and death before. For me, it just seems to happen a lot more frequently than I'd like, but I can honestly say that I feel like I am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Being 31 and having experienced what I have has made me who I am today.
This year as far as my anxiety goes, it has been better than many years passed. I feel like I have a handle on how my brain works when I am anxious and I have learned tools that help me to pinpoint what is actually anxiety and reality. No, the two aren't always related (isn't that fun?). I feel like with anxiety, you're more sensitive, on edge, and fearful. Things that normally wouldn't be a big deal are, and this year I feel more inclined to recognize when this is happening. I don't have the uneasiness I once did and I am working harder to come out of my shell around strangers and new people in my life.
Social media wise, things have been hard this year. I have felt attacked, belittled, and insignificant when it comes to my political and religious beliefs. These are things that are so personal and I don't share them with just anyone (although if you're my friend on Facebook you can see what I believe in). I hate the bashing that's gone on in all directions. It's so uncomfortable and the level is unnecessary (again referring to social media). I feel that so many people have become exactly what they say they hate (aka hateful). It's disheartening, but my hope is eternally in Jesus, and no one else. I don't think like a lot of people and my beliefs have and always will be different. I feel like my calling is to be in the world, but not of it. You do what you wish, but I don't have to be like you or think like you. Guess what? That's okay!
On the dating scene, things have been...interesting. I went on a few dates this year, but nothing worth mentioning. The dating pool is somewhat small, because again, politics. I have seen more people say, "Trump/Hillary supporters swipe left" than ever in my life. It certainly didn't feel that way the last election, but again, I digress (also see above). I am not trying to run away from the fact that it is this way, but it's just not me to be that way. I like to know all aspects of a person. If things don't align in some areas, that's fine. They just need to love Jesus and people. The rest is just preference. 
Financially, I would say this has been the best year. I am working toward stopping the credit card cycle and working to pay those balances off! I really hope for it be paid off sooner than later because I am tired and I have no social life 😃. But, this is the price to be paid. Don't rely on credit cards ever and have a budget. Simple. I've also ventured into owning my own business with SeneGence and it's so fun! I get paid to play with make up! (LipSense color is Blu-Red on my lips!)
This year has had its challenges, but it's had its amazing moments, too! Here's to bigger and better in 2018!

How was your year? Please share with me below!


November 22, 2017

Photo by Andrew Neel on Unsplash
I did a recent Instagram poll that asked if you wanted to see more about my journey through paying down (and OFF) my debt. Many of you (100% of you actually) were on board and gave a resounding "YES", which was exhilarating and terrifying. See, I am a brand-new on this eliminate debt train. If anything, I was all aboard the sister train of the eliminate debt train, heading at blazing speed in the opposite direction called the "buy all I can and don't care about it" train. That train has since stopped running. Thank the heavens!

I thought I would give a little more insight into my situation and maybe inspire some of you to start your own financial wellness journey, because that's exactly what it is. Your financial wellness is just as important as your physical, spiritual, and emotional wellness. If my financial life is in ruins, you can bet other aspects of my life are going up in flames as well. Money connects us to everything, as much as I hate to admit that. It's true.

Growing up my parents did not budget. I never saw them sit down and look over the expenses for the month or have a detailed discussion on how they would pay for my cheer uniform or private tumbling lessons. When I was in high school I worked part time during my senior year. I would leave school at 11:30 and work between 5 and 9 hours a day at Chick-Fil-A.Truth be known, my check was cashed and two hours later, it was all spent. After all, I didn't pay for a car, or insurance, or cell phone bill.

Fast forward to college when I bought my own clothes, but my parent still supported me. My last year of college I took on my monthly car payment and car insurance. I still had no concept of a budget, or of needing to save money. If I needed something, I called my parents.

When I was married, it hit me pretty hard that I was now on my own. I obsessed over my bank account, my expenses, everything. The first couple of months we didn't have cable or internet. We just needed to find some footing before adding on other expenses. We were pretty frugal, but we still spent more than we should have. Still no savings and my 401k was just starting to build. As time went on, our income would become unsteady. Around the last year of our marriage, the credit cards started, and they didn't end. We put groceries, unexpected trips, gas, eating out, pretty much everything on credit cards. I had two credit cards, and after my divorce, paid them off. I now have several credit cards. A small bad decision led to bigger ones, and here I am today. I am not a finance blogger and while I've made some really good steps this year, I am nowhere near complete with this process.

Here are the steps I have taken that I will expand on in the next few months:

1. Opened a savings account for automated deposits.
2. Took on a part-time job that helps me earn between $150-$200 a week.
3. Set up a monthly budget with the EveryDollar app (created by Dave Ramsey).
4. Consolidated all credit card and personal loan debt into one monthly payment. This was done through Greenpath, and I can't recommend them enough. They work on your behalf to lower your payments and your interest rate so the payment is more manageable.
5. Temporarily ceased contribution to my 403b to save up an emergency fund. Ideally, this would be 3 months worth of expenses.
6. Stopped using credit for EVERYTHING and only use cash.
7. Pay all monthly bills at once with my monthly paycheck, and pay all weekly bills with weekly paycheck.
8. Started using Ebates to earn me cash back on purchases I would make anyway. Since I am without a credit card and can't redeem cash back, this is the next best thing! Click here to get $10 automatically by setting up an account with Ebates! **affiliate link

I will share more of my strategies in upcoming blog posts. Since this is taking up so much of my brain right now, I may share multiple times a week. I really would like to inspire and motivate others so we can be there for each other. This process is hard and it doesn't happen over night. Let's get some support going!


November 2, 2017

I was born and raised in Georgia and although I had a four year stint in Alabama, I didn't have to prepare in the same ways I did when moving to Nashville this year. Moving out of state can be stressful and the logistics can be quite overwhelming. I anticipated so much anxiety about my move, but I honestly have done really well considering. It's been a little over 8 months and I feel as though I am still learning so much about this new city.

I had only visited Nashville once before I applied to work at Belmont University. I remembered the city being full of hustle and bustle, but I was also on Broadway (eye roll). Trust me, there is WAY more to Nashville than the honky tonks and bars on Broadway. This city actually has a lot of culture and a lot of things to explore. Its a music hub, but also a hub for local art, culinary delights, and the great outdoors! Have I sold you, yet?

When I decided to relocate out of state I was concerned with two things. 1. Housing and 2. Cost. Obviously, these things are super important because if you are like me, your budget is very limited!

Here are 10 things I learned when moving out of state.

1. Housing is your primary concern, so make it your primary priority. 
If you are coming to a new place and literally have two weeks to find housing, you need to start in the obvious places. Google and Facebook! I ended up finding my first living situation via Facebook and it was a God send! It was a house with two other roommates, rent and utilities included, and a decent commute. I wouldn't have chosen that location on my own, but it definitely helped me in the beginning. Don't be totally sold on your first place. Even think about doing a short-term lease. Unless you've really lived there, you won't know how it will work for you. Also, Google apartments or houses in the area and see what pops up.

2. Be willing to be flexible. 
Again, you may not find your perfect apartment right away. You may even be able to do something as temporary as a hotel. For me, I needed all of my belongings up here and somewhere to put them.

3. Embrace homesickness and loneliness. 
I tried like heck to feel all the emotions that comes with leaving a familiar place, job, friends, and family. I didn't isolate myself, but I didn't hit the town running either. I wanted to feel all of those things so I could move on and get on with my new life as quickly as possible.

4. Do some exploring.
Always find out about your surroundings and do a little aimless driving. You never know what you may come across.

5. Budget, budget, and budget. 
Always determine what you can spend on moving expenses before you hammer down an apartment. I ended up having my dad move everything for me, and I was fortunate he could make the drive in one day. If you're moving across country, you may not have that luxury. Sell all you can, downsize if you need to, and donate unused or unnecessary items. It's always easier to move less!

6. Ask around. 
When I got to my new job, I asked all of my co-workers about everything. I asked about food, cleaners, auto mechanics, doctors, etc. Chances are they will know a lot and be willing to help you out since they are your amazing new co-workers.

7. Find a church or social club. 
I am still working on this one, but it's always good to surround yourself with like-minded people. Find a church or try Meetup.com, or other social organizations. You may find your new bestie!

8. Keep in touch. 
Once I moved away I had to find time and ways to keep connected with my friends from back home. We FaceTime, get on House Party, and text as much as we can. It helps me to feel like I am in a familiar place and gives me that sense of comfort!

9. Get a city guide. 
I am fortunate to have the Nashville Guide whenever I need it. There's everything from restaurants to parks to coffee shops to bars in there and it helps me to find some footing when I want to explore and go somewhere new. See if your new city has something similar!

10. Always include local flare. 
Once you're beginning to feel settled do and buy things to support your town and local businesses. Nashville has so many things that I could literally fill up my entire apartment with art, coffee mugs, posters, etc. Even if you are moving out into the abyss, find something that will help you appreciate your new surroundings!

Any other advice I missed?? Leave a comment below!


October 30, 2017

I have to say that more often than not I get envious of others as I scroll through my Instagram and Facebook feed. Especially lately, its been one pregnancy announcement after another, and I am thinking maybe there's a club I am not aware of. If anyone knows about this club where couples gather and decide when to all get pregnant, let me know, low key.

I am in a unique place in my life where I am single, but independent, and really working hard to get in a better place mentally, emotionally, financially, and physically. I can work on myself when others are seemingly working on their growing their families, their marriages, their business, etc. I am in a place where I've made decisions in my life that didn't pan out, but I am also taking risks. Not a lot of married couples or parents can take these kinds of risks. I am also in a new city with a small support system, and no family closer than two and a half hours. I have learned to become very self-sufficient. I have learned to lean a little less on others and more on myself and God (that's a whole other blog post though).

I am also in a place where I see so many people tackling their dreams with all they have and I am kind of sitting wondering, "What next"? I have already moved to a new state and rent my own apartment. I have already earned my Master's degree, and purchased my own car, and been in relationships, and been through a divorce (not a dream of mine, but hang on). I say all that to say, I have already been through so much and done so much, and I guess I am more-so sitting here wondering, "What can I possibly do that I haven't already done"? I know you're probably thinking there's plenty more I could accomplish, but again, I am in a unique place.

I'd love to drop everything and become a travel blogger or work remotely while changing the world. I'd love to start my own business and open up the most beautiful and warm coffee shop known to man. I'd love to pay off all of my debts and just travel somewhere new every month not worrying about cost or expense because I am hella frugal and smart with my money.

The truth is, all of those things seem nice, but none of them make my heart go pitter-patter. It sounds really crazy, but the thing that keeps me up at night and makes my heart skip is the thought of becoming a wife and mother. It's again what I see in all of my Instagram stories and blog posts and Facebook news. The two things I want to be, and guess what, I have no control over either of them. I never thought I'd get back to this place where my heart longs to love another, but here I am. The only two things I haven't accomplished yet. People will give me understanding looks and tell me I'll look back and appreciate this time, but right now all I keep thinking about is the shrinking amount of time I'll get to be with them, my husband, and children someday. All of the days I could have been preparing a meal for them, or all of the nights I was longing to meet them, when I could have been feeding them, or rocking them back to sleep. The trips I may one day take with my family, but not the one I call my own. I could open 100 coffee shops and not feel any fuller in my heart.

I want to be happy for those who've finally found what they're looking for, but a part of me just wants to cry...again. I feel this sadness and this pain that doesn't seem to go away. I know that a husband and family can't fulfill everything, but what if that's my heart beat and my deepest desire? What if it doesn't go away so that I don't get jaded or forget why I am here? I can't fill it with other #girlboss dreams, because truth be known, I am more of a #girlwife or a #girlmom than a #girlboss anyway...And guess what? That doesn't make me any less strong, or fierce, or independent. It just means I haven't found my dream yet.

We're all dreaming, right? 


October 24, 2017

GUYS! It has been FOREVER since I last blogged. I didn't plan on this months long hiatus, and frankly, I am a little upset that I let it go on for this long. I am so sorry I have left this little bloggy in the dust. That was not my intention.

Luckily, no one messaged me asking if I was alright or dead...Wait, is that a good or bad thing? :)

I have so much stuff to catch you guys up on, but here's the gist. I am still single, not pregnant, and still employed! Woo! I also still reside in Nashville, in case you were wondering. The transition to this big little city has been a long and hard road, but I have to say, things are looking up. I have gleaned so much from this place and I plan to share more about that as my posts go on.

Without any further delay, because we all know that's been a theme around here, let's get into coffee talk! (By the way, this is the best way I know to get back in the swing of things. Sorry this post isn't more exciting for you).

FEELING: Super giddy about Fall! The leaves are starting to change in Nashville and the temps are cooling down. All I want on the daily is soup, chili, a blanket, and a cozy film to watch. I am actually going to be making large batches of chili and soup over the next few days to freeze and have whenever I want! I also can't wait to go to Cheekwood and check out the pumpkin house. It's a house made of pumpkins, and it's the most wonderful basic thing I could ever experience. #basic

THANKFUL FOR: I am just thankful for my job situation right now. I feel in the last few months my stress level has gone WAY down and for that I am so thankful. I was on a roller coaster at my previous job and it was honestly a very unhealthy situation. Situations like that shouldn't exist in my opinion and I am never going through that again!

EATING: I have been eating a lot of Lean Cuisines. They are getting healthier and less filled with junk, so I don't feel bad getting them as much anymore. Also, I can't get enough frozen pizza! Sorry, not sorry. Oh, and Halloween candy!!!

LOVING: I am loving all kinds of random things, so I will just list them here. Dustin Lynch, coffee (always), booties at Target for under $40, Fall clothes, pumpkins, Manhunt: Unabomber on Netflix.

So, if you are reading this, tell me what's up with you. Also, yell at me for leaving this blog for SO LONG!


April 21, 2017

Happy Friday, everyone! I know. It's been way too long since I have posted. Since moving to Nashville things have been crazy and it's just like, "hey girl, when you gonna have time to blog?" The short answer is I don't know. The long answer is IIIII dddoonn'ttttt knnnooowwww. See what I did there?

Here are my top links from this week. Feel free to click and enjoy along with me!

1. The art of the messy bun. Since I have curly hair almost every hairstyle is messy? But, if I get my butt into gear and actually straighten this mess out, this would be the bun I would choose. Warmer weather equals hair outta my face.

2. The annoyance of the Unicorn Frappuccino from Starbucks. Yada yada sugar sugar yada yada gross. We get it. No, I won't be trying it.

3. Trying to be financially fit. Trust me, it is hard, but I am getting there. Goodbye debt, hello stress-free (ish) life!

4. I kinda wanna go to a barbershop. They cut women's hair. What do you think?

5. Literally my favorite coffee drink of all time in Nashville. Go to Barista Parlor Germantown if you are ever in the area.
A post shared by MELISSA FAYE (@melissafayeblog) on

6. The "Missing Maura Murray" podcast. If you like true crime and mysteries, this is one podcast you'll want to subscribe to. The two guys hosting the podcast have been investigating since 2014. They are also in the process of producing a documentary.

7. If you haven't watched Nail Career Education on YouTube, you need to fast. Not only is it fascinating and oddly soothing to watch, but it literally makes me want to do my own nails. But, uh, maybe not.

What are your favorite links/stories from this week? Also, what are your plans this weekend?


February 11, 2017

Pretty soon things in my life will be completely different. Where I live, where I work, the people I will interact with on a daily basis will be completely different. The last time things significantly changed for me was in 2010. I feel that year was a culmination of everything you could possibly experience in one year. I started a new job, graduated from college, broke up with a longtime boyfriend, started a new relationship, got engaged, my sister got engaged, got married, my sister moved to another state, I lived with a man for the first time, learned about married life and being a wife. Everything! Not to mention during that time I experienced so much backlash from my friends about my decisions. No one was really supportive, but I moved forward anyway. I did everything in the midst of no support, and I have to tell you it was extremely hard. While what I was experiencing was essentially positive, the effects were quite negative. This is when my anxiety really began, so when things start to change, even a little bit, I experience anxiety.

This time things are truly changing for the better and on a good note. I am moving to an unknown town, but thankfully I will have an awesome roommate and my living situation couldn’t be more perfect. Things with my living situation went from okay to good to great in about a span of a week. Initially, I was going to live in a basement apartment in a house in East Nashville. The house was okay, and the price was okay, but I still felt apprehensive about who would be living above me. A house is very different from an apartment. Houses really aren’t built for privacy, especially post World War II houses. I knew that privacy and noise would be an issue, but I didn’t have much time to make a decision, so I moved forward while looking at other options. I started to ask around and research good neighborhoods.

While Nashville has boomed in the last 5 years, there are still some spotty neighborhoods that haven’t quite turned their corner yet. I started looking at the Bellevue area, and realized that it may be a good place for me. I found an awesome apartment complex with a 1 bedroom available and newly renovated. On the property there are 3 lakes, 3 pools, fitness center, outdoor lounge, 4 mile walking trail, not to mention monthly social events. I thought it was perfect, until I saw the price. I tried to budget and figure out how it could work, but I still came up short. I thought surely this had to be the best decision because I was moving in less than 2 weeks!

Shortly after I received a Facebook message from a girl who had seen me post on the Rooms for Rent Facebook page. She asked if I was still looking for a place and was wondering if I would be interested in being her roommate in a 3 bedroom/2.5 bath house in Bellevue. We talked and realized we had mutual friends and she even had connections at my current job. Our values, lifestyle, and availability kind of matched up, so now I am living with 2 other women, for less than $700 a month (including utilities). Now, in Nashville, that is a GOOD DEAL! I move next week into her condo temporarily while the house is being painted and then the following weekend is moving day (for real)! My dad is being gracious enough to move my stuff into storage in Nashville while we wait for the house to get ready.

I hope things go well and smoothly during this move. There will be a lot of adjusting, but I feel stronger and more capable of dealing with such big changes. The good part is is that I won’t be alone and I will be able to have good women around me. Being a Christian is sometimes difficult, but it helps when you have people around you with the same faith and beliefs. I am so blessed by how God has worked this out. I honestly couldn’t have dreamed it up any better.

If you pray, please do so for me this week. This week will be my last week at my job, and I have been there for a little over 7 years. Also, please pray for the move that everything goes smoothly and all of us mesh well together. Send good vibes this way! 💕


February 10, 2017

I cannot believe it has been this long between posts. Sorry about that, guys! I have had so much craziness happen, and I can't wait to share with you!

First off, Christmas was a wonderful time. This Christmas I was able to spend a good amount of time with my family and was able to see my niece and nephew for a good bit (they are my favorite part). On Christmas Eve, my Dad and I were on our computers surfing the web and just relaxing after traveling and spending time with my sister and her family.

I got this itch to apply to jobs in Tennessee, thinking how great it would be to be in the same state as my sister and my niece and nephew. My brother in law still has a ways to go in the Marines, so I thought it would be nice to be closer to her so I can help, if needed. I applied everywhere in Tennessee it felt like. I came across one school, a Christian university, Belmont University. I had never heard of it before, but I saw a job that peaked my interest, so I sent in my application right then and there. I never really gave it another thought.

A couple of weeks later I received a call from the Director of Financial Aid who wanted to ask me some questions. Knowing about me having to relocate he asked about my timeline and when I was looking to move. I told him right away, of course. We talked for about 10 minutes about my experience and my thoughts about the position. When we ended the conversation he said he would be in touch to schedule a Skype interview, since he knew I was so far away (Columbus, GA). I waited a few days and finally received a call about the Skype interview and I literally screamed inside. A few other employers had called me about scheduling interviews, but Belmont seemed right up my alley. I prayed and prayed and prayed. My parents were praying, my co-workers were praying, my friends were praying. In my heart, somehow, I knew this was it. This was my chance to finally move on from Point.

The Skype interview went smoothly and I felt very confident. A couple of days later I got an email about an in person interview scheduled for the following week. Anticipating this, I booked an AirBnB, and I kept praying. I asked God for the chance to move. I asked God for the chance to start fresh. I asked God for good friendships and connections to develop. I asked God for a job in which I could make an impact each day, and feel as though my work mattered. He answered.


Yes, I will be a resident in Nashville! 💟💕💞. The city that stole my heart three weeks ago. The city that I will get to live in all of the time. I will be able to do, see, feel, taste, and experience so much. I am so excited! God has really been working everything out from timing to living situation to moving, everything! I will post an update once I get up there and settled, and may even give you a house tour :).

Follow me on Instagram for little updates in between!


January 1, 2017

Dear Readers,

You may have seen my thoughts on this past year, but I also have some hopes for 2017. I have hope because the Lord promises it to us in His word. I have hope because there’s no reason not to. 2016 really tested my faith, but it affirmed it as well. I have no solid foundation without Jesus. I have no hope without Jesus. He is and will always be my side through the muck, muddy, unclear, and confusing times. This world throws so much at us all the time! We are constantly bombarded by society’s expectations of what success is, of what power is, of what acceptance is. I have seen so many of my friends and family members fall victim to the expectations set by this world. They end up burned out, frustrated, and starving for something better.

This year, I have hope that:

1. I will continue to strive toward Jesus. I will become more like Him and less like me.
2. I will be generous with my time, my words, and my money.
3. I will learn from my mistakes and never make the same ones again.
4. I will fill my body, mind, and spirit with life giving things, rather than toxic, unhealthy, and joy stealing things.
5. I will become more content in my life.
6. I will embrace new opportunities.
7. I will become more creative with my resources.

I know that all of these things are what anyone would want in the new year. I hope to have these things and more. Sure, the bad will happen, but I am tired of living waiting for the other shoe to drop. Good can be just around the corner, and that is my mind-set. There is always something better right around the corner!

I wish you all well in this new year. I hope that no matter what happens you have a strong support system around you, but remember, you are your own worst enemy. Don’t let yourself get in your way!

CHEERS to 2017!

Happy New Year!