The Fourth Trimester

Picture this: You’re laying in your bed with a pillow propping your baby up to nurse. The baby will nurse for a moment and pull away. Sweet little bear. You try to reattach the baby. They reattach for 30 seconds and you sigh a sigh of relief, right before the baby detaches again. You repeat this process for about 5 minutes and finally, the tiny human attaches and stays there. You hold your breath, trying not to fuck it up. Once you realize that the baby is latched and feeding

Gibraltar

Sorry, but that’s what I think of any time I hear "Gibraltar." So, what/where is Gibraltar? Gibraltar is a giant rock & it's also, a British Territory, shaped like a peninsula on the coast of Spain. I know what your thinking... "Why would you travel thousands of miles to go see a rock? We have plenty of rocks in America!" and while you are correct, this rock is astounding. It literally took my breath away when we first saw it, and that was at night. The juxtaposition of this

XXX Amsterdam XXX

Every time I tell an American that I'm going to Amsterdam, I get the same reaction. You can see on their face that they are trying to figure out why a nice girl like me would go to a naughty place like Amsterdam. Hahaha And I understand this because when Covergirl initially asked me to go to Amsterdam, I too, felt confused. I had to make an appearance on the following season of America's Next Top Model and they happened to be shooting there. All I knew about the city was that

My Weight Journey

Twenty bucks says that you think that's a typo and I forgot to write "loss" between weight and journey. Well, you would be wrong, my friend! Our bodies are constantly changing and evolving. Sometimes we gain weight, sometimes we lose it. That's life, kid. We are taught that once we reach our "peak" bodies (usually around high school or college) that's how they are always supposed to look. And that's why I want to share my journey with you. 100 I hit 100 pounds in 5th grade. A

Dear Diary...

I was raised as a strong southern woman in a strong southern family. We went to church every Sunday & Wednesday, ate homemade supper at the table every evening after Daddy got home, and always said the blessing. We shelled peas, raised a garden, and marched to the beat of our own drum (even with frilly panties and ruffled socks on). I was never taught to succumb to a man. In fact, I was the only girl on my T-ball team, and I kicked all the boy's butts at the sport. I was rais

Restaurant Review - P.S. Kitchen, NYC

After bar hopping around the city with my best friends, I found myself a bit peckish. Okay, I'm always hungry and I love nothing more than eating at restaurants. Plus, I'm a restaurant owner, so it's research, right?? Whatever. I don't have to make excuses. Hahaha So, I wanted to eat again and I was near a vegan place called, "P.S. Kitchen." It was the only place within walking distance that was still open, so Robert, James, and I decided to walk over and give it a shot. The

Restaurant Review - Blossom du Jour, NYC

My adopted brother, James Delisco lives in New York City. He is an icon and probably one of the most talented people on the planet. Seriously. He is also currently in Kinky Boots on Broadway if you happen to be in the city. James used to be vegan, way before I was. Now, he isn't fully vegan but he does still eat mostly plant based. I am telling you this because he suggested that we have a late lunch at Blossoms du Jour and I completely trust his opinion! I was honestly expect

Fall/Winter Trends at Maree Pour Toi

I flew into New York City this morning and felt that familiar clutch in my chest. This city has a hold on me, even when it's cold and rainy. It's like a long lost lover whom I try to forget but time and time again, I feel that pang in my heart and I know that it still has a hold on me. It's fashion week in NYC and that always holds a special place in my memories. I went straight from the airport to the Maree Pour Toi pop-up shop downtown! My uber tinkered down slick, brick st

Restaurant Review - JaJaJa NYC

Hey, y'all! It's fashion week and that means that I'm in NYC. This is my first long-stay trip to New York as a vegan and I am super excited to eat as much vegan food as possible! My first stop was "JaJaJa" (pronounced Ha-Ha-Ha), a vegan Mexican restaurant downtown. I happened to be two blocks away at a casting and when I searched nearby vegan options, it popped up. Everyone loves Mexican food and since the Nashville airport offered nothing vegan this morning, I was pretty st

Supermodel & Restaurant Owner?

Today marks my 4 year anniversary of owning a restaurant in Springfield, Tennessee. Holy Moly. I was only 26 years old when I decided that I was tired of modeling and wanted a change. My husband (fiance at the time) and I moved to a small town outside of Nashville (where my family had recently moved) and decided to open a farm-to-table fine-dining restaurant. We knew next to nothing about the town or the people, but he went to culinary school and is an incredible chef, I lov

Why I Went Vegan

A vegan diet means that I do not consume any animal products. I do not eat any dairy, eggs, or meat. Not even fish! No cheese, no ice cream, no milk. Lol There's a lot of confusion about what veganism is, so hopefully this description helps everyone understand what I do not eat. Though, the fun part is what I DO eat! **Oreos are vegan. In July of 2017, I went vegan. Gasp. I know. I don't do diets. Me going vegan had nothing to do with me wanting to lose weight, because I was

Anti-Aging Secrets

I sat down with Anjee Wilson, R.N. and owner of "Added Touch" in Springfield, TN. We discussed various options for aging skin and available treatments! I mean, who doesn't want to look younger?! Watch our video to learn more about topical treatments as well as some more invasive options for you. Please, keep in mind that every medical treatment has risks associated with it. Don't use anyone who isn't a professional to perform treatments. Also, you are beautiful just the way y

What It Feels Like

I was able to catch up with the dazzling model, Katya Zharkova in South Beach. Katya moved to America because she saw me win America’s Next Top Model. It’s crazy because I think of my past work with reality tv as something to sweep under the rug, but then I remember the fan mail I received from mothers who's daughters were battling eating disorders, girls who wore a bathing suit to the beach for the first time because of me, and then there’s Katya, who left her country, moved

Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition

If you follow me on social media, than you probably already know that I am going out for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition this year. This decision is pretty random for me. Until Beyonce was on the cover, there were very few curvy women associated with the magazine. Following Beyonce, we had the Ashley Graham cover, and since then, Sports Illustrated completely shifted their usual type to include all shapes, sizes, and colors. My good friend from Russia, Katya Zharkova

Singapore

Have you ever dreamed of going to Singapore? Smelling the east asian spices, walking through the enchanted botanical gardens, sipping high tea on top of the city, shopping in the biggest fashion houses in the world; What’s not to love about this city/state/country? Other than durian, of course. When an opportunity arose for me to model in Singapore, I jumped at the chance to go. Up until this point, the only place that I had traveled to in Asia was Istanbul, and let’s be hone

New York, New York

It calls to me like a scorned lover. Every time I see it's silhouette, my heart stretches with a deep longing, and pangs with a sense of weakness. The city is a companion to the lonely, a lover to the loveless. It is oxygen and blood, grit and glue. It sticks to the marrow and seeps into the dark places where you hide from yourself. It knows your deepest desires, ones that you've hidden even from yourself. The city twists and tantalizes, constantly evolving to rise up and mee

Istanbul

I can almost hear the mosques singing the call to prayer now. To anyone who wasn't raised in a muslim country, the sound is at first disarming, as I'm sure church bells banging around is to people from those countries. In every movie about the Middle East, you hear this song. It is a passionate cry, ringing out from delicate minarets perched high above the city. It is frightening at first. You can almost feel soldier's boots drumming on the streets outside, but Istanbul is no

Water Fasting

"Water fasting" has taken the world by storm! Customers at my restaurant in the small southern town of Springfield, Tennessee are talking about it and that has my attention. When I first heard about water fasting, I started asking questions, but everyone just told me how great it is for your body! Upon further research, I found that a water fast involves a human consuming nothing but water for an indeterminate amount of time. Some fast for 5 days, others for 30 days. My first

Cheers to 10 Years!

Ten years ago today, I became the Cycle 10 winner of America’s Next Top Model; The only plus sized person to ever win. My life, as I knew it, would never be the same. I remember the excitement of winning after the tumultuous build-up that is reality television. You see, people can not think that you’re going to win. Hell, you don’t even think that you are going to win. Without the ever-changing role of your “character” (aka you, a real life human being) the show would be bori

Dubai On A Layover

If you want to skip the whole story, the moral is that you should definitely leave the airport!!! The last time I booked a flight to South Africa, I had the option to fly to Heathrow with a short layover, or Dubai with a 9 hour layover. I had never had much interest in visiting Dubai. Don't get me wrong, Dubai is an absolutely insane city, but it is a mirage. It is a city in the sand, that really began developing when oil was found there in the 60's but took off in the year 2