What 10 years of marriage has taught me


Kleinfeld Fine Jewelry Decker Engagement Ring 1ctw
                                                                              The goal isn’t to get married,but to stay married! Ring – Reeds Jewelers


*lazy blogger has entered the chat like nothing has happened…5 months later

Oh hey yalll! Yall look nice and I see life has treated you well.

How’s the family? Ya mama an ’em good?


                           Ankara gown and tuxedo – Aden Secret



Life has just been happening to me and all around me so there’s that.That is the explanation you were looking for.I started my own boutique Shop Caribbean Cowgirl ,been booked and busy, raising them damn kids, and just recently celebrated 10 years of marriage.Yes, ten years.I got married at 15 (please know that is a joke,i hate ruining the joke by saying that but I am an overexplainer and alot of people out here be kinda slow…a lil bit).

Now that I have been married 10 years I am an expert, okay? That’s my whole adult life! Being married is a rewarding feeling when the two are in it together and I have learned alot about myself and what it takes to make a marriage work.

 This is us.November 7,2009.Cameras have come a long way.So has makeup.Aint God good?


For richer or poorer…


Listen, I have experienced so much in my short (but long in today’s marriage life cycle) marriage.From financial wealth (I mean good credit too!) to bankruptcy.This year we both have worked for ourselves and while our income is 30% of what it used to be,yet we are the happiest we have ever been and the closest too! Now I know you are probably thinking “Chile, you gotta do better with your money.Bankruptcy shouldn’t an option right now”.Firstly *rolls neck, when you can no longer pay for the life you are accustomed (due to injury or unexpected life events) to and you don’t want to lose what you have fought hard for bankruptcy can protect your assets and from debtors.

Tim was getting major injuries fairly close to each other and was not able to get  a job making the same thing he was used to making.In North Carolina,there is no labor union and worker’s compensation is NOT on YOUR side.I sat in doctor’s offices and watch (doctor’s on the worker’s comp payroll)  tell my husband he was free to go back to work while he is telling them he can barely ride in a car without pain.So when you are forced to go back to work because of a system designed not to truly care for your well being then you aggravate injuries; and more continue to happen.That is exactly the situation we were in.He almost died behind the wheel driving trucks while running off little sleep and from constant pain.I remember one of the last days when he went to work.I walked him to the door and I could see tears in his eyes. Yall that shit hurt me,it hurt my soul.He didn’t want to go back to driving trucks and risk his life,but bills and life and being scared to take a leap filled the air and our minds.I never thought about leaving him or thinking he was less than a man because he wasn’t as physically able as he once was.In the words of the group of rambunctious teens singing and dancing in unison :”We’re all in this  together….” *raises arms ,stomps,claps

It was a week or two later and I and he both talked about it and he made the decision to walk away from that job ,not only for his health but HIS LIFE.It was the best decision WE ever made.

A piece of advice,never let a job come before you mental health,well being, and family.You could lose it all.Also noone expects the worst,so be mindful how quick you are to ‘hindsight is 20/20’ someone’s life or situation.Getting married doesn’t exempt you from struggle. Struggle is also not just a single parent issue.We also both got fired from jobs before at the same time at no fault of our own at Christmas time it took me 8 months to find a job after that read about it here.



   This is us…now.   Blazer -$99 ShopCaribbeanCowgirl Shoes- Zara (old). Tim’s look -nobody cares lol



        Gas up your spouse,even if it sounds stupid (at first)

So after that time when I got fired and it took me 8 months to find a job, when I did I was elated! Sure I was working at the DMV (baaabyyyy I got stories, okay?) but I was able to finish school to get my degree and also its where i started my blog! My hand staaaaayed glued to my phone and my face was too.Yall Tim was ready to leave my ass.I couldn’t get him to understand Instagram to save my life.He thought it was dumb.Clearly he was WRONG (I hope he see this part lol).

                                                     Him:’when you getting off that damn phone?’
                                                       Me:’when you getting off my damn nerves?!’


However the more I wanted to take it seriously,he did too.He bought a camera,studied while he was on his truck driving route and on his day off we would shoot 3 looks and edit about 20 pictures.I remember when I was pregnant or #slayingfortwo ,with y’all stinking friend Pink;he was overworked ,exhausted, and was over taking my pictures.We had many conversations  where I learned to COMPROMISE and start editing for myself because it was too much for him at the time.But I do remember telling him “babe please,just do this right now its gonna pay off,I promise!“. Luckily he believed me and in me.I was able to do the same thing for him as well.As great as he is with the camera,for a long time he didn’t believe it.I used to get so upset and fuss when I saw him doubting how great he was.I am an Aries and I’m Jamaican.I’m passionate and I yell alot. Its my way.I poured into him and I’m not saying that to brag,but I did.I wanted him to know whatever happens I’m gonna be there cheering for you and making sure you win.Eight months into him becoming a full time photographer and he is the happiest he has ever been! We not Beyonce and Jay Z yet, but we are getting there just wait!

                                                             still shooting even at our vow renewal,i luh hinnnnn

You don’t expect strangers to want to see you win,so when they do its a pleasant surprise.But when someone you know and love wants to see you win,its another level! Believing in a loved one’s vision and truly supporting them through that process is a magical experience.You are just out on a limb ,hoping that you aren’t wasting your time or doing something stupid—-and here you have someone who is pouring into you.There is no greater feeling especially when you are feeling low and masking your fears and doubts.SUPPORT, AND I MEAN TRULY SUPPORT THE ONES YOU CARE ABOUT. If you find knowledge on their skillset ,share it with them.Share their posts.Send clients their way.Invest in them. 


Have a tribe

Although your marriage is between you and your spouse.Its more than you two,especially if you have kids.I like to think of my hubs as my best friend,but not my only friend.In some cases, that can be dangerous because you can stunt your growth as a person that way.Heaven forbid something happen and then you are left alone and not a soul knows you exist.WE NEED PEOPLE.Sometimes the tribe can change or you may outgrow a few.That’s ok too.

For me, there has been one major source or a chief of my tribe and it has been my sister.For the times I needed to vent,get a reality check, needed a mental health check, or just needed a break she was there. I don’t mean with the ‘woo woo woo’,but I mean truly concerned and ready to embrace me ,judgement aside.My brothers Joel and Mark have also been my tribe.The words of encouragement they have given and the life they have spoken into me and Tim has been monumental.When you are working for yourself especially this type of energy is the ONLY energy you need around you…but that’s a whole other monster that I will save for another day.

                 My sister.My road dawg.My bottom bish.My secret keeper.My EVERYTHING.



Things always have a way of working themselves out


The phrase ‘Anything is possible’ definitely applies to my life and marriage.I wasted alot of time thinking noone would help me when the chips are down and that energy blocked alot of blessings for me.I have come to realize stressing wont change that outcome.Energy is everything,and baaaabyyyy it don’t lie. If you feel like there are people around you who aren’t there for you in ways you need move forward without them.Your life won’t change other than less stress.Once you do, it changes your energy and you can attract better energy.There ARE people who want to see you and your marriage be successful.

There have been times this year where me and Tim were on the brink of losing everything and I mean EVERYTHING! From our home,to our sanity, to even our marriage, but through it all we had great people around us who would not let that happen!


If you stalk me on IG or read my blog a few years ago then you know my relationship with my parents is rocky.The only reason I really wanted to do a 10 year vow renewal is so that my dad could finally walk me down the aisle since he so ‘Jamaicanly did not approve of my marriage’ for whatever reason 10 years ago.Hoping we had moved past that, I began to plan a 10 year vow renewal with $7 dollars.Chile,when I tell yall money was tight,it was tiiiiggghhhhtttttt. Kim Kardashian in anything she wears tight.First day of wearing braids tight.Buying Italian made shoes but not ordering a full size up tight.

                                 Me planning my dream day on a Zaxby’s combo budget


I lost my wedding ring years ago in the store,thanks to my worthless 9 year old Nay Nay.I hope she enjoys not being the only child in the house anymore—tee hee. So here I am sweating bullets and shaking in my wig hoping to secure a ring partnership with Reed’s Jewelers.I’m already planning to hear no response and cry myself to sleep when they replied with “Sure! We would love too!”.Now I was even more nervous.What if I lose this ring? What if they were just joking? Do they know how much of a mess I am? All these thoughts and more clouded my mind.I had to remind myself that I took a DNA test and found out I was _______! You guessed it, 100% that B&^$@.

Us at Reed’s with the bling bling.Not only was the ring exquisite but so were the amazing associates.Everyone had beautiful stories of their lives ,loves,and family.Ring shopping at Reed’s was more that ring shopping.I got to know the people behind the rings.





Me anytime,anywhere,any dimension showing off my Kleinfield Collection ring from Reed’s Jewelers .The collection is in partnership with the amazing Kleinfield Bridal fromTLC’s ‘Say yes to the dress”.


I had secured a new ring and had an amazing dress being made so all I needed was the venue and my parents to confirm.I had reached out to a local hotel that I shoot at frequently and they gave us an outside venue and a room FOR FREE! All was on the up and up for ya girl! I planned the date of the renewal around my brother’s Thanksgiving visit since he lives in Hawaii and I never get to see him.Thanksgiving is also his birthday so my vow renewal was my present to him (lazy gifter–party of one).Everything was about to be perfect—-or so I thought.I had so much anxiety but I didnt know why,but deep down I just knew it was too good to be true.My parents pulled their patented “noone told us anything” routine which has run its course over my lifetime.So instead of going back and forth with them after telling them all the details every time we talked,I decided to not to even beg or grovel for their attention or approval.I cried my eyes out and decided to do away with the ceremony and take pics instead.I just didn’t want to walk myself down the aisle,not again.I was hoping to be past that part of my life.The morning of the vow renewal,the weather was dreary and cold (so was my heart towards my parents as they called that morning scrambling to act like they wanted to be there now.I was Omarion and they were Lil Fizz.I felt no ways #icebox #overit). 

My sister ,last minute, suggested that I continue with the ceremony and ask my brothers to walk me in.I mean it only made sense as they were there for me to lean on during my marriage when I needed it and not my parents.An hour before the ceremony the clouds rolled away and the sun came out! It was like a movie! My brothers walked me in like a MF Goddess with Gods on each arm.I was honored.I felt loved.I deserved.

  we are a whole moooooood.(Mark in the Shopcaribbean Cowgirl black and red fedora Joel in Cab cap)


The moment of my dreams.Being escorted by my brothers to the love of my life!
Those better had been tears in Tim’s eyes,cuz I was gonna turn around if they werent lol.
                                                          Tim’s dad officiated the cermony
                                          I forgot my vows yall.smh.I was fumbling .



I made him kiss me twice.He was trying to give me a dry peck and I wasnt having IT!


I could not have had a better day! #teamellis Tim’s oldest son,Titus and our stinking girls Nay Nay and Pink (I wish teenage boys would smile lol) Nay Nay and Pink DGAF about a camera….sigh.
My sisters. Tim’s sis , Hope (left) My brother Joel’s wife Dana (in red hat) My sister Toot giving us Ankara silk robe goddess on the far right
My fave guys.My brothers,bro in law,step son,nephews and of course MY MAN!


My day was perfect! Not only was it full of love but full of amazing partnerships! We spent absolutely nothing out of pocket.Special thanks to Aden Secret for the amazing gown and tux.When I tell you she is a genius with the styling and fit! I had no clue what my dress would look like.I just sent the owner my measurements and got this amazing dress that fit like a glove! Oh yea,and Tim looked nice too lol. Thanks again!

So if you want an amazing stand out ankara look,HIT HER UP!


                                                                 Custom dress- Aden Secret

Incredible thanks to Hotel Ballast for providing an amazing waterfront venue and amazing night after.I was so excited I forgot to snap the amazing spread they delivered to our room, along with the bottle of wine.I was able to keep my $7 allocated for the vow renewal budget because EVERYTHING WAS SPONSORED!!! I literally was on cloud 9! All the mental stress and anxiety leading up to this day was put to rest faster than a kid who was tricked into eating a melatonin gummy by their parents.

                                 Trying to secure a spot on a commercial with this pic lol
                                               What we actually looked like lol
                                               Pizza and wine for breakfast never looked better lol

I really have to thank Reed’s Jewelers for the amazing ring set I never thought I would have.My soul was crushed when I lost my ring years ago.I knew it would be a long time before I would ever get another ring and one so special.The fact that they made a dream come true for me that I let die years ago is truly remarkable! They also took the time to get our initials engraved just in time for the ceremony.I’m forever grateful!

                       Kleinfeld Fine Jewelry Decker Engagement Ring ctw ,Reed’s Jeweler
                                                LE & TE always and forever *heart emoji


I know this was kinda long but it was necessary for me to share my gems and my gratitude.Thank you for reading! Have any relationship gems? Share them below!



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