Thursday, November 28, 2013

Give Thanks

  • My family. Wouldn't trade them for all the money in the world. 
  • My health. Aside from allergies, I am almost always healthy.
  • A roof over my head, a soft place to sleep, the warmth of central air/heat. 
  • Conversations with the kids (nieces and nephews). I love seeing the world from their perspective. So much wisdom from such tiny souls. Plus they give the best hugs this Teedy has ever received.

  • These dope chocolate boots that I will be rocking today. I LOVE them. They are a fave. 
  • My writing ability. It is my gift. I couldn't be happier that I get to share it with the world. 
  • The Thanksgiving day meal I prepared and the family time that I am craving today. 

  • Reciprocity in my life from those I love and trust. I dig that they give me what I need. 
  • The arts. Good music and literature and art makes my soul happy. 
  • And, finally, the promise of tomorrow. Another day to try to get this thing called life right. 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Guess What?!?

In an effort to get some more writing experience, I have decided to branch out a little. When I saw that Patricia of Global Couture tweeted about needing new hair bloggers, I decided to throw my hat in the ring. My very first piece has been posted!!! I wrote ""Creating Your Natural Hair Routine" for new naturals. Please go there and read it, naturalistas!! Hopefully, you will be seeing more of my work there as well. Enjoy!!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Get Into It: Why You're...

I came across a great post while reading today. It is titled "Why You're Single" by Amanda Crute. I shared it below because I needed to read it and I figured someone else may as well. Get into it.

You’re single because you’re single. It’s not because you texted too much or too little or waited 33 minutes to respond because he took 23. It’s not because you met up with your ex that night at 5 a.m. that no one knows about, or because you kissed another boy after a date with a loser.

You’re not single because you spit food on that date or tripped coming out the the movie theatre. You’re not single because you hurt your first boyfriend really badly when you were 15 or because you have yet, to this day, to apologize. It’s not because you were secretly jealous when your friend got a boyfriend or that a guy you dated for two months now has a really cute girlfriend and looks really happy. And you’re happy for him. But still ill that he found someone before you.

You’re not single because you slept with your ex boyfriend. You’re not single because half the world found out when you didn’t even want to remember it yourself. You’re not single because you think the guy your friend wants to hook you up with is ugly or not tall enough. It’s not because you’re not willing to put up with someone who doesn’t brush their teeth on a regular basis.

You’re not single because your standards are too high. Good for you for having standards. It’s not because you didn’t like that really, really good guy who wanted to take you on a date and you just weren’t feeling it. And it’s not because you like to wear pajama pants as soon as you get home and wash all the makeup off your face. You’re not single because you didn’t learn enough from the past or would rather chill on a Friday night with your blanket and a cold beer than shower, get ready, and go out. You’re not single because something is wrong with you.

You are single because you are single. It’s really as simple as that. You haven’t made the connection with another heart yet. You can get dolled up, dress cute, cut your hair, dye your hair, tweeze your eyebrows, put on lipstick and you may still. be. single. You can go out to a bar hoping to meet the love of your life and not find a damn one in the place attractive. And it’s going to remain that way until it’s time for you to find one. Stop hoping for it. Start living the life that you do have instead of wishing for things that you don’t have. There will come a time you’ll meet a boy and you’ll have to give up some of this single freedom you currently have. Start being more thankful. Start doing that now.

Monday, November 18, 2013

And They Say...

…if you’re lucky then with age comes wisdom. I thought that the older you get then the more things would make sense. Specifically relationships, love, and friendships. I was wrong. Dead wrong. Have I learned things in all of my almost 34 years? Of course. Have I figured it all out? Not at all. Situations occur and I’m truly stunned by people’s actions.

I do not understand how one could be a despicable human being and look themselves in the mirror daily and be ok with that. I’m pretty straight forward. If I rock with you, you’ll know it. If I don’t, I won’t fake it for anyone. If I do not like you or care for you, I’ll keep you out of my space. It’s that simple. But, nothing in life is always so cut and dry and black and white. Too many folks live in that grey area. I’m not comfortable there. I like to know where I stand with folks. No matter if it’s positive or negative, give it to me straight.

Maybe my expectations of people, places and things were set too high from the beginning. I know I have ridiculously high expectations for myself. And, I expect people to at least be decent human beings who say what they mean. I do not believe that’s too much to ask of folks. Just be. This may result in me being alone a lot. I’m ok with that.

I’m not in the market for new friends. My circle is small but I trust them all with my life. They’ve proven themselves and vice versa. I’ve been betrayed, stabbed in the back, lied to, lied on, disrespected and had the trust broken. I’ve survived it all. It made me cherish the true ones in my life more. It’s also made me more guarded which is a catch-22.

I own every single thing that has happened to me, all that I’ve done. It’s all a part of my journey. I know what I know so far. I’m hungry for knowledge. I’m open to learning more and more. I don’t think we’re put here to figure it all out. Maybe it’s the questions and the quest for the answers are the point of life. It’s thoughts like this that cause my nightly insomnia, like tonight. What do you think?

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Movie Review: "The Best Man Holiday"

Before I begin, this is not a review that includes spoilers. Why would I want to ruin such a dope film? "The Best Man Holiday" is the long awaited sequel to the classic "The Best Man." It took 14 long years for fans of the film to get a sequel. I am of the mind that all movies/books do not necessarily need a follow up. But, in this case, I was all for it. The characters in both films felt familiar. I have watched "The Best Man" more times than I can count. I know most of the movie word for word, line by line. It was and still is that good. Because I was such a fan of the first, I have been super excited about "The Best Man Holiday" for a while now. Via Twitter, I have been hearing such great sparkling reviews of the movie. I simply could not wait to see it for myself. I waited until the second day to see it. The theater was packed. It was a predominantly Black audience. I was ready for greatness to grace the screen.

Anything good in life evokes an emotional reaction. There were times that I was laughing during this film. Other times when I was surprised. I cried more than once. I left the theater feeling lighter. It was simply a brilliant film. From the words to the characters to the scenery, everything was just right. Malcolm D. Lee, the producer behind both films, got it incredibly right. The cast, which includes Nia Long, Taye Diggs, Sanaa Lathan, Morris Chestnut, Regina Hall, Harold Perrineau, Terrence Howard, Monica Calhoun, and Melissa De Sousa, look incredible. I dare to say that they look better now in their 40's than they did before. It is true what they say, "Black don't crack!!" With a cast as beautiful as this one and the chemistry they share resonating through the screen, how could it fail? It simply could not. I can honestly say I truly enjoyed this film. So much so that I may even go see it again tomorrow. (Yes, it was that good to me). Also, I absolutely LOVED everything about Mia and Lance's house. It was decorated in my specific taste. Very classic and clean and understated. I loved their bedroom the most. The gifs below are hands down one of my favorite scenes in "The Best Man Holiday" when the guys do New Edition's "Can You Stand The Rain" for the talent show. It is not often that a sequel is as good as the first. This time, I believe the sequel eclipses the original. This is a dope film that everyone can relate to. Go see it for yourselves and let's discuss. Get into "The Best Man Holiday" this weekend. 

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Get Into It: Jhene Aiko's "Sail Out" EP

This week has been all about Jhene Aiko's new EP "Sail Out." It has been on repeat for days now. I've heard songs from her before. One of my faves has to be "July" which Drake made his own. But, she is signed to Def Jam and is reading her first full length release "Souled Out." But, she gave her fans a little gift in the form of this "Sail Out" EP. It's only 7 songs but a really good 7 tracks. I was sold on the first listen. The first single features Childish Gambino is "Bed Peace." I love it. 

Even though it's only 7 songs deep, every song is a standout track. My absolute favorites are "The Worst," "Comfort Inn Ending," and "3:16a.m." I play these three tracks the most. Of course, the lyrics are what get me. Jhene has a light, airy voice that is comforting to me. Also, her features are very dope. "Sail Out" features Kendrick Lamar, Ab-Soul, Childish Gambino and newcomer Vince Staples. If you are an old or new fan of Jhene's, "Sail Out" is a great piece of work. Musically, I love the way it makes me feel. It speaks to a certain part of my soul. Get into it and Jhene Aiko. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Ladies Love Lyrics: John Legend's "All of Me"

I've noticed that no matter what's going on with me, I love a great love song. I crave them. They are usually perfection to me. That is to be said about John Legend's "All of Me." It is a beautiful musical composition. I love everything about it. The piano is divine, the lyrics are amazing and his voice is the only one I want to hear sing this particular song. If I still had dreams of certain things, this song would definitely be first dance worthy. I also really love that he used actual footage from his wedding to Chrissy Tiegen for the gorgeous video above. Just a really great song. You can't help but feel and be happy while listening to it. It's just that good to me. The lyrics are below. I have my favorite lines highlighted. Go ahead and give it a listen. Also, get into his "Love in the Future" cd because the whole thing is a dope listen. 

"What would I do without your smart mouthDrawing me in, and you kicking me outGot my head spinning, no kidding, I can't pin you downWhat's going on in that beautiful mindI'm on your magical mystery rideAnd I'm so dizzy, don't know what hit me, but I'll be alright

My head's under waterBut I'm breathing fineYou're crazy and I'm out of my mind

Cause all of meLoves all of youLove your curves and all your edgesAll your perfect imperfectionsGive your all to meI'll give my all to youYou're my end and my beginningEven when I lose I'm winning'Cause I give you all, all of meAnd you give me all, all of you, oh

How many times do I have to tell youEven when you're crying you're beautiful tooThe world is beating you down, I'm around through every moodYou're my downfall, you're my museMy worst distraction, my rhythm and bluesI can't stop singing, it's ringing, in my head for you..."

Monday, November 11, 2013

It's My Hair: Pin-up Into Bantu Knot Out

Let's talk about natural hair. Lately I've been having a lot of fun with my hair. Trying new products and new styles. I have incorporated my Natty CoCo products into my weekly co-wash sessions. The above picture began as a wash and go, which I've grown to love but probably won't be doing again until next year. The weather has changed and leaving home with wet hair is a no no. I cowashed y hair with my trusty Suave Humectant Conditioner. I followed that with the Natty CoCo's whipped Shea Butter and Curls Unleashed Curling Jelly. And, I finished by spraying my hair with water and the Natty CoCo leave-in mist. I was in the bathroom looking for something when I found a back of bobby pins. I decided to see what kind of pin up I could come up with. I used about 20 bobby pins to secure this look. I LOVED it. It was sassy and sexy and new. I wore it like this for a few days. I received a lot of compliments for it. It was a win for me. 

Then, I went from a pin-up to a bantu knot out. This time, I only used the above pictured Natty CoCo products. This was the best bantu knot out that I've done in 2+ years. I was uber excited about my results. I had to document it hence the below pictures. I loved it. It was curly and soft and just awesome. Also, I was sick all week and this bantu knot out was the first thing to make me smile in days. It was also the first day I felt better in about 5 days. This hairstyle was also a win for me. Every where I went I got complimented on it. I love when other natural haired Black women compliment my hair. It's like we're our own sorority. I am currently typing this with my hair in bantu knots because it is the go to style for this week. Can you tell how much I love it? It's been a great few natural hair weeks for me. I couldn't be happier!!

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Newsflash: Black Skin Isn't A Crime

Jonathan Ferrell. 
Jordan Davis.
Trayvon Martin.

I am tired. Tired of waking up to news of another unarmed Black teen being shot and killed by a white person. Tired of the killers claiming the "Stand Your Ground" defense. Ti-red. Is is open season on Black people? Does my brown skin automatically make me a suuspect and a criminal? And, if so, there is something inherently wrong with you and your racist way of thinking. This is not ok. Killing people is not ok. Murderers like George Zimmerman, Michael David Dunn, Randall Kerrick, and Theodore Paul Wafer should do the time for their crimes. No one should be able to legally kill unarmed Black people and not go to jail. How is this ok with anyone? 

Trayvon was just walking home from the store with a tea and some Skittles. He never made it there. His race made him a suspect in the eyes of his killer. Jordan Davis was just sitting in a car listening to music in the parking lot of a gas station. He was minding his own business. He never made it home because his killer decided to take his life. Jonathan Ferrell survived a horrific car crash only to die at the hands of a white cop who considered him a suspect. REnisha McBride had a car accident, a dead cell phone and was just trying to get home. Another child who did not make it home because her killer decided she shouldn't. None of this is just or moral or legal or right. Why does my skin offend white people so damn much? Does my Blackness really scare them that much? Is there an automatic target placed on our backs? None of them were doing anything wrong or illegal or criminal and they are still dead. There should be nationally outrage about this.

This is how I truly know that the U.S. is not a post-racial country. Also, that term is stupid. Even with a Black President and a Black First Family living in the White House, we are not past race related issues int his country. I've seen and experienced more issues of racism since President Obama began his historic run in 2007. Race will always be in issue in the country which was built on the genocide of one race (Native Americans) and the enslavement of another (African Americans). No, I do not want apologies for slavery or genocide. I want acknowledgement of the messed up history of this country. I want racist to realize that none of us have a choice on our skin tones. The melanin in my skin isn't meant to offend you neither is my pride in it. I am fearful for my 4 brown nephews and 5 brown nieces that this is the world they are growing up in. I am pissed that this is the world we live in. And, more than anything, I am tired, weary and sick of this. It's 2013 and change is needed more than ever. We need a resolution but even more, I think we need a revolution. And, yes, it needs to be televised, tweeted, tumbled and blogged about. 

Saturday, November 09, 2013

Being Totally Random Because It's November

  • It's Saturday. I've done nothing all day but sleep. I am truly only getting dressed to go get food because the place I want food from does not deliver. So, I have to untwist my hair and put on pants...which I despise. But, I am coming back to be a lazy, pants-less, twisted hair bum in like 30 minutes. Today was a really good day though. I am pleased with myself.                                                     
  • Nothing like being caught off guard and surprised in a good way. It's happened a few times in the last week or so. I couldn't help but smile about it. Even when I was nervous and unsure, I was still really happy about it and the person who was responsible. I'm also a realist. I know that things are exactly the way they present themselves. I will not be romanticizing this. It's not what it was. But, it's something. And, it made me happy :-)                                                                                                                                                              
  • Football is in high swing. And, that makes me uber happy. Especially since my Saints are 6-2!! We should be 7-1 though. That last loss hurt like hell. I have no doubt that we will redeem ourselves tomorrow against the Cowboys cause they suck. I think this is our year to get back to the Superbowl!! Geaux Saints!! Who Dat?!? We Dat!! ;-)
  • Robert Glasper's "Black Radio 2" is the hit I knew it would be. There is just no denying great music. I cannot stop playing "Somebody Else" featuring Emeli Sande'. It is my current favorite. Other stand out tracks are "Worries," "Calls," and "Trust." If you were a fan of the first "Black Radio," then this one has your name written all over it. Get into it. 
  • I have a confession. I am ridiculously addicted to cappuccinos now. I do not know where this addiction comes from. It just snuck up on me. Also, I am not a cappuccino snob. Like, I don't have to get it from Starbucks or CC's or PJ's. I love the ones from gas stations. White chocolate caramel is the flavor I dig the most. Also, helps wake me up in the morning. Also, I want one right damn now. Addicted I tell ya!!!
  • My Dad's 54th birthday was on the 5th. This was the first year since he passed that I did not wake up sad. I actually felt happy. I celebrated him. My siblings all posted pictures that I've never seen of him. It was a good day. I'll always miss him. But, that heaviness of his death is lifting. I needed a reprieve so I am glad. Happy Birthday, Dad!!

  • The last week or so has been...interesting and weird. I cannot truly explain it. It's juts odd but in a good way. I'm trying my best not to over think any of it. Cause no matter what, life is gonna happen whether I'm good with it or not. That's my new mantra in life. 

  • In effort to have a more positive outlook on life, I am seeing all of the good in certain situations. Like something as simple as someone who means a lot to you saying your name after not hearing their voice in months. It made me smile. And, I took it in the spirit that it was given, as just a moment. 
  • I think that I'm a reasonable, rational chick. I don't do bs or drama. So, if you know me, why would you think I want any of that in my space? I do not want it. Either be 100 with me or stay 100 feet from me. It's just that simple. I am too old for games. Either it is or it isn't, there is no in between for me. This has been a read. Catch it.                                                                                        
  • The reality is I'm different now. I am a different woman that I was a year ago. I'm not 100% comfortable with the ways in which I have changed. But, changes occurred because of situations in my life. My only goal is to protect myself. I know how to do that cause I've been her before. I just didn't think that I would have to be her again. I have to believe that there is a plan for my life that I haven't figured out yet. Because everything I said I wanted in the last few years seems totally out of my reach. So, it's time for a new plan. I don't know what it is yet. *Developing*                                                                                                                                                
  • I am currently rereading "Catching Fire," a book I loved the first time around. After I'm done, I think I will look into a different genre to read. I need something new to read for those sleepless in Seattle nights. I think I need to be intellectually stimulated by something totally different than what I'm used to.                                                                                                                                                          

Sunday, November 03, 2013

When Insomnia Strikes & Ambien Doesn't Help

Rejection. It's a word we all know. It's a word and a feeling I despise. It's also the reason for this post. I have been thoroughly conflicted about, well, life this year. I had the most prolific epiphany the other day. I've been a heartbroken beautiful mess this year. I did not know how to truly function. Or how to work my way through it. The heartbreak was horrific to me. But, there was another aspect I had not acknowledged until now. It was the rejection that made it sting. I had to sit down and write out the names of every boyfriend I ever had to figure it out. No boy/man had broken up with me since I was 14. I am 33 now. That is literally my entire dating life. I have always been the one who ended things and walked away. It has been my modus operandi, my defense mechanism. I did not want to give any guy the chance to truly hurt me so I left before they could or I caught feelings. No problem, right? Wrong.

That way of living set me up for a great fall. I wasn't prepared for the rejection. It hit me so hard and knocked me on my behind. I know that he may not see it that way but it read as the ultimate rejection. Being rejected by someone you love is awful. I cannot even fully explain it in words. It's just a feeling I don't ever want to feel again. Ever. I can take rejection in other areas in life. I'm strong enough to handle it. But, in love, I cannot. I get it. It's not something I'm used to nor should I be. It is just a part of life that I'd gladly give up. Papi, no mas! Do. Not. Want. It's kind of terrifying the things you learn about yourself in the middle of the night when insomnia strikes and Ambien doesn't help. 

Saturday, November 02, 2013

Let Me Tell You A Story in Just 6 Words (Part 2)

It's been a few months since I updated my 6 word story blog here. I've written so much more on my Tumblr page. My 6 word stories have a very obvious theme. Even when I try to deviate from what I label "love sh*t," I always end right back there. The heart only wants to write what it knows. I wanted to share my favorites so far. 
  • Not loving you isn't an option.
  • Nothing matters more than my feelings. 
  • Twice loved, Lost double. No mas.
  • Writing takes me away from it.
  • It's 3am and I'm missing you.
  • There's a story behind these eyes.
  • Spending my nights writing my wrongs.
  • I wonder about you too often.
  • I truly miss belonging to someone.
  • So many questions. Not enough answers. 
  • You cannot hate what you love.
  • Does everything remind you of me?
  • Happens at the most inopportune times. 
  • Give me all of my secrets back.
  • Restless sleep. Haunted dreams. God morning.
  • The moment you realize what's real.
  • Vulnerability isn't my favorite personality trait. 
  • All my stories are about you.
  • I cannot deal with the residuals.
  • Liking you. Loving you. Losing you.
  • I'm fronting, just so you know. 
  • Feelings are real but aren't facts.
  • Feelings get caught in my throat.
  • If I could forget to remember.
  • Can someone turn off my thoughts?
  • No one wins. We both lose. 

Friday, November 01, 2013

Around These E-Streets (X)

°  The families of slain teens Trayvon Martin and Jordan Davis testified in front of Congress against the "Stand Your Ground" law. The hearings are essential and important because the law is too ambiguous. 

° The Foreign Exchange has to be one of my favorite groups of the last few years. This interview is really dope. If you don't know about them, now is the time to check their music out. You will not regret it. Trust me. 

° Juror B29 from the GZ trial says that the trial ruined her life. Sorry but I'm not sorry. This is the same woman who came out after the verdict and said that she believed GZ was guilty of murdering Trayvon Martin. She didn't fight for his justice. So, I have no sympathy with her. 

° Jay Z releases a statement that I am wholeheartedly here for. Read more aqui. Also, he has his first fragrance "Gold" coming out this winter. I bet it will smell like money!

° Kanye is delusional. He truly believes that his baby momma turned fiancee is more influential than our Harvard law degree holding First Lady Michelle Obama. What? o_O Kanye, have all the seats. Also, he is on a tour absurdity that Demetria Lucas (aka A Belle in Bk) and Michael Arceneaux explains to a t.

° Banksy took NYC by storm last month. Every day, there was a new Banksy art piece. I only think one day it was shut down due to the NYPD. Because catching the elusive artist is more important than doing actual police work. This and this have to be my two favorite pieces. Banksy is so dope. 

°  I discovered a new artist this week. His name is Rob Milton. His "Melt Away" is my current favorite track. Get into him via his Tumblr and here and on iTunes.

° I do not know what to say about this Chris Brown rehab for anger issues story. Luckily, Freshalina of always does and quote colorfully I might add. She sums it up perfectly