Troop Beverly Hills Chic

Oh my goodness, it took me a while to get this post together. It's been super crazy.  In 2011, I went to the first official Texas Style Council as an attendee.  I was a fresh Dallas transplant and a baby blogger.  So it was super cool that on the last Texas Style Council, I was asked to be a speaker/panelist on style.  That was such a full circle thing to happen right!?! So the conference was staying at Camp Texlake, a girl scout camp with horse, bunk beds, smores, and even a hedgehog named Hattie (#hattiethehedgehog).
  There were had a room with 4 other girls, who all had such different journeys and blogs, but I will tell you more about them little later.  

Overall, I loved the experience.  It felt like a retreat where you just got to connect with other women that I would probably not have the option of connecting with.  Being one of the few women of color there, I also like seeing how although there may be cultural differences, we all go through very similar things as women, from love to fear, to balance of life/family and careers, and on how we feel about ourselves, our bodies, and our own worth.  In addition to one of the few women of color, I was one of the few plus size women, and I probably was the largest.  It was even more interesting that I had girls, straight size, Caucasian, model-esk looks/body that had followed me through my career and specifically through my boycott.  I was in shock and totally caught off guard.  Just being honest in my own thoughts about this one girl in particular, I am the complete opposite of her, but she still was able to connect with me and even cheer me on in my push for plus size options.  It made the attributes that I would immediately use to separate myself disappear.  I was a woman connecting with other women.  The plus size and the black part wasn't in the forefront for a change.  Texas Style Council taught me a lot about my own mindset and where's it going as a person who is championing the rise of women as a whole.  Every year I grow older, the more I evolve in my thinking about the world and rejecting some of the things that I was ingrained in me growing up in the south.  

I wanted to get into my bunk-mates, because I throughly enjoyed their company and getting to know about them.  Chelsea from Chelsea-Bird, has literally the coolest white/blonde hair that I've every seen.  She went out of her way to to include a hermit like myself and to make sure I was getting out of my room.  There was 250 women at this camp and it can be a little overwhelming for someone who likes her alone time.  The next is Tieka from Selective Potential, who totally shocked me at her Vulnerability panel.  I'm always amazed at people who can put so much out there emotionally via their blogs.  Her panel had me crying and I was not expecting it.  She was super sweet, but I admire her courage immensely to put it all out there and let the chips fall where they may.  She spoke on her divorce and releasing that information to her readers.  It was truly powerful.  I was not expecting to come away with the conclusion that there is power in vulnerability.  Last, but not least, my roll dog was Kasmira from What I Wore 2Day.  I think we connected on a hermit and age level, oh and the fact that she is probably the only non black girl I've every known to sleep with a satin pillowcase (and yes she brought it). (Note to self:  If I ever decide to have a kid and she is a girl, I will probably name her Kasmira. I love that name. Kasmira Valentine, yep that's perfect.  #namejacked).  Here and I were on the style panel together with Laurel Kinney. I loved Laurel and I loved her style most of all and she was super cool and laid back. Her style was like some of the best casual looks/effortless looks I had come across and of course she's a stylist, so it makes sense   

I know this is a hefty post, but it was 4 days so it deserves the length.  Finally, I just want to thank Indiana for inviting me as a speaker for #TXSC15.  She inspired me to do sort of a retreat like this one day, but not too soon.  Mama's plate is full. If you are wondering about the girl scout theme look, well it was Troop Beverly Hills, so I went all out...as I always do. 

A video posted by Chastity Garner-Valentine (@garnerstyle) on

A photo posted by Kasmira Kit (@kasmirakit) on

A photo posted by Chastity Garner-Valentine (@garnerstyle) on

A photo posted by Chastity Garner-Valentine (@garnerstyle) on