Saturday, December 29, 2012

Dumb Blonde

2012 was not a great year for me.  I made a lot of stupid mistakes in 2012.  A lot of dumb mistakes.  I put myself through a lot of needless, unnecessary heartache just by making dumb mistakes.  I made some bad decisions.  I fell in love.  But I tried to make something fit that did not fit.  And I ignored the cardinal rule: DO NOT TRUST YOUR HEART.  That was the #1 dumbest mistake I made in 2012.  Let me explain.... 

When facing big decisions, oftentimes the mind and the heart are at odds.  The mind tells you to go one way, while the heart tells you the complete opposite.  When you are at a crossroads, which one do you listen to?  Many times, the mind - using logic and reason - gives you the right answer.  The correct answer.  The best answer.  But because we are human, that's not the answer that we're looking for.  That's not what we want to hear.  We don't want what is good for us, we want what feels good to us.  The heart wants what it wants, right?  A deeply flawed statement that should never be touted as gospel.  I shant preach to you, but there is a reason that Biblically we are warned "the heart is treacherous and is desperate - who can know it?" (Jere. 17:9) 

The definition of treacherous?  "Guilty of or involving betrayal or deceit, marked by hidden danger".  How can the heart betray you?  By "wanting what it wants."   Your heart can fool you into believing that the object of your affection is good for you, when in reality it is anything but.  In the beginning, it all looks good (hidden danger) and everything is lovely and great. But eventually, those warning signs go off and the danger alarms start blaring louder and louder...  and you can choose to listen or ignore.  But really - would you "follow" a person that you knew was desperate or treacherous?  That you knew was deceitful or would end up betraying you?  A person who is desperate is reckless and will do a.n.y.t.h.i.n.g. to get what they want.  A person who is deceitful is a l.i.a.r.  If you knew that about a person, would you still "follow" them?  (Is anyone else picturing Samuel L. Jackson as the filthy crack addict desperately trying to score his next fix in the movie "Jungle Fever"?  Just me?  Okay....)

Honestly, sometimes following your heart yields disasterous results.  Fortunately for me, I didn't go too far so the results were not quite as bad as they could have been.  But as mentioned, I did put myself through needless and unnecessary pain and heartache.  And a heart that is finding it hard to let go.

I'm trying something new in 2013.  2013 is all about the brainpower.  Sure, we all make human dumb decisions from time to time, but I refuse to let an entire year be marked by one.  I am not a dumb person.  So really then, I guess I'm not trying "something new" in 2013.  I'm just going back to my roots.

Monday, December 24, 2012

KAT VON D - YOU ROCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ok, let me explain the 75 exclamation points.  Kat Von D, the lovely tattoo freak artist who notoriously slept with Sandra Bullock's husband, YOU SKANK, is a genius!  And I'm not one to go throwing the G word around lightly, I might add.  Ms. Von D has found a way to invent attach her name to a brilliant foundation that seems more like...the Un-foundation.  Her Lock-It Tattoo foundation is genius.  As in...GENIUS.  Amazing.  Brilliant.  I want to die wearing it.  Seriously, I mean, none of that embalming stuff - gimmee the Kat Von D Lock-it Tattoo stuff and I'll be good.  (Though technically,....not.)

Anyway, I should explain that I am not a foundation person at all.  Though I clearly  (as in...clearly) need the coverage, I hate the way foundation feels on my face.  Like my skin can't breathe or something.  I always opt out and go with concealer and powder instead, though I always regret the decision in pictures later.  But I was going out of town over the weekend for a special event, and I wanted to look more polished.  Because I had seen and read great things about this foundation, I stopped by Sephora and picked up a sample.  The first thing I noticed upon using it the first day of my event was the texture.  I could barely get it of the tiny tiny plastic sample bottle I was given.  After finally coaxing it out with gentle words ("please please, you gorgeous foundation, come outta there.  I have to be at this event in twenty minutes? Please?  You can do it.  I'll be your best friend...."), I opted to use my fingers to apply it.  Fingers because the tiny amount that did come out was not enough to apply with a brush or sponge ("you promised you'd come out of the bottle - you slut - is this the best you could do?").  Anyway, turns out you only need the tiniest amount ("there there. I'm sorry...") because this stuff means business.  It covered so well I decided against using concealer, though I slightly regretted that later in pictures.  Not only did this foundation not feel heavy or look cakey, it wore all day long.  I mean, I didn't have to touch up or use powder in the 10+ hours I was wearing it.

  Foundation worn, in sunlight, at 9AM. (You can see why I regretted not using concealer under the eyes, eh?)


And back at the is STILL in place around 7:00 later that evening.  I literally did not have to touch up or apply powder in all that time.  It felt like my own skin so much I even forgot I had it on.  Unfortunately, as you can see, the HAIR didn't hold up quite as well...I ask that you please forgive the bad bangs (self-mutilation) and fried texture....

So in conclusion, ladies, I will say this: RUN...DO NOT Sephora and either pick up a sample or just shell out that $34 for a bottle, as I will be doing in precisely 1 hour.  Again, tipping the hat to you, Ms. Von D - YOU ROCK, chica!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, December 21, 2012

757's Best Kept Secret


Ok, I showed you pics of my hair in it's natural state.  I showed you pics of my hair with my favorite products in it.  Now let me introduce you to my other 'hair secret', previously referenced as "dream stylist extraordinaire": HADNEY ALEXANDER.

 Check the shoes, yo!

Hadney, aka The Haitian Hair Artist Extraordinaire is The Bomb Dot Com.  Truthfully, this girl is the TRUTH.  You can look @ her own hair and see that she is not playing around - she means business.  Look @ this chick's hair:

GOR-GEOUS.  No weave, no relaxer, just one seriously fly blowout!!!  I should mention that this Haitian Hair Artist Extraordinaire has done my hair since waaay back in the day, when she was only about 16 (and you know I'm still "forever 21" so you do the math) and braiding my hair in her mama's kitchen.  And ladies - WE ALL KNOW ABOUT THOSE KITCHEN BEAUTICIANS, don't we?  The one's who've been doing hair since they came out of the crib - they make the best stylists, yo!  When I say that Hadney is The Truth, I mean...The Truth.  As in Paul Pierce the Truth (Boston Celtics reference, if you're green).  If you don't believe me, believe your eyes:

Me at her salon November 2011 - check out the Knatty Dread, mon:


HADNEY, the Haitian Hair Artist Extraordinaire, handed me a glass of wine, and over pleasantly hilarious conversation, fearlessly worked her magic, undeterred by my tougher-than-Nigerian-hair.  A little bit of this, a little bit of that, some extra Haitian spices for good measure (kidding) and I had one seriously fly cut and blowout.  (And all without the stench of burning hair wafting in the air of so many of those Dominican salons.  No diss - I, too, use to frequent them but even MY tougher-than-Nigerian-hair could not take all that heat.)  Take a look at my "seriously fly haircut and blowout":

 Check out that SHINE, yo!  It's not the camera flash - it's those Haitian spices my girl uses. Lol.

Honestly, I cannot say enough good things about Hadney Alexander.  As a hair artist, she is The Truth.  As a person, she is the genuine article.  The little lady with the BIG PERSONALITY.  She has a Kimora Simmons FABULOSITY about her, but without all the "sickening" that is Kimora Simmons.  If you live in the Hampton Roads area, or will be visiting the area, you.simpy.must. check out this Hair Artist Extraordinaire:

Hadney Alexander
Bradcon Int'l Hair Salon
(757) 717-2346


Sunday, December 2, 2012

Show & Prove (Shortest.Post.Ever)

So many pictures, so little words.  Lesgo:

Love the JBCO/Mango Cupuacu combo. Nicely moisturized, nicely defined ringlets.  Even better (and bigger) when hair is further separated.

Product Review with Tamar Braxton

I'm gonna let you in on a big secret: I am lazy.  Or should I say - when it comes to my hair, I am lazy.  Yes, when I first went natural, I too, was a product junkie, like every other natural out there.  And because I am a hoarder attach sentimental value to things, I still have quite a few of these products under the bathroom sink, collecting dust.  smh.  I've since streamlined my routine because I realized I simply didn't have the time, or money, to use seventeen different products on my one time.  So I figured out what works best for my hair and that is what I stick to.  Shampoo & conditioner aside, today I use 2 products to style my hair:

 Tropic Isle Jamaican Black Castor Oil  & SoftSheen-Carson Roots of Nature Mango Oil & Cupuacu Butter Whip Coil Cream

Jamaican Black Castor Oil, or JBCO as we in the natural hair community affectionally like to call it, is an awesome product. I'd been using regular castor in my hair (and on eyelashes) for years before I'd heard of JBCO.  Castor oil is used for a multitude of things, but it is known to be a tried and true hair thickener and moisturizer.  I can personally attest to that.  My already thick hair has grown ever bigger thicker, and because I rub a little bit on my eyelashes nightly, I often get asked if I'm wearing false eyelashes.  Or more specifically - "what kind of mascara are you wearing? How many coats of mascara are you wearing?"  People - believe me when I say I'm lazy low maintenance.  I simply can't be bothered with more than 1 coat of mascara.  Castor oil just thickens and grows my lashes as well.  No extra "coating" needed.  This Tropic Isle JBCO is (in Tamar Braxton's voice) "the bomb dot comb. And she don't use nothing in her hair if it don't work...." Sidebar: How crazy does Tamar sound speaking in third person? Hil-ar-ious.  And...sad.)

5 out of 5 stars

Now the Mango & Cupuacu....see, too lazy to finish out the full product also a great product.  I purchased it because of seeing the cupuacu, which I know to be extremely moisurizing, having used it on my hair before.  When I first went natural, I purchased straight cupuacu butter directly from  Brazil and believe me when I say that it is some good stuff.  However, this Roots of Nature product (contains cupuacu but is not straight cupuacu butter), used in conjunction with the JBCO (that's how I roll) is cheaper and just as effective.  No passport needed.  I've seen mixed online reviews of this product, but I can only give you my review on what works for my hair.  And she thinks this stuff is the bomb dot com.  Her My hair thinks this stuff is the bomb dot com.  After lightly oiling my scalp w/ the JBCO, I take a little dab of the Mango Cupuaco butter, add a  dab of the JBCO, apply it sectionally to my hair, and commence to twisting.  The moisturization (is that a word? somewhere my "grammar nazi" mother is grimacing in all her grammar-snobbery glory) and definition is awesome. 

I would give this 5 out of 5 stars, but because I've never actually used it alone without the JBCO, I'm going to give it:

4 out of 5 stars   (because who doesn't shop Wal-Mizzle?)

Stay tuned for Show & Prove pics!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Tougher Than Nigerian Hair, Part I

And speaking of hair.... I don't think I've ever done a hair post, have I?  What self-respecting natural has a blog with no hair posts?  They ought to take my black card, huh?  Anyhoo, allow me to hair.  I am natural.  No chemicals, no color (unless it's the spray-in kind that was favorited in the 80's), nada.  I'm not sure I subscribe to the whole "hair typing"thing, but if I did, I'd say my hair is about a 4ZG.  My tougher-than-Nigerian hair is really course, kinky, and coily.  Let me be clear, however: it is the love of my life.  Yep, I'm talking about my hair.  Let me say it again: My.Hair.Is.The.Love.Of.My.Life.  It is super-thick and grows easily, and when I wear it free in it's natural state, I feel like a freakin' superhero.

Note: It's the flash, but I have not 1 grey strand (no husband or kids :-)

Circa 2010:

Pardon the smoker's lips black lipstick.... I'm kidding.  I don't smoke.  You may surmise from this photo that may hair looks a little stay-thirsty-my-friends dry.  Natural hair has a tendancy towards dryness, as does thick hair, if you don't stay on top of it.  Well ladies, I have found the answer to that in the form of 2 dream products....and 1 dream stylist extraordinaire, who I visit occasionally.  I'll talk more about thoseand a product review in the next post. Stay tuned for that.

* What song (or verse) would you use to describe your hair?

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

"TEACH Responsibly. Stay Thirsty, my friends."

I saw this picture of this little girl on Facebook and thought "what a pretty child."  My immediate thought thereafter was "I hope her parents tell/teach her that she is beautiful before the media tells/teaches her otherwise".  That same day, in fact, I posted that as my FB status, which brings me to this post.

This is not another "team lightskinned vs. team darkskinned" post that we've all seen on way too many a blog or Youtube video.  I mean really folks, it's basically 2013 - can't we all just get along?  This photo resonated with me because I grew up the same brownskinned little girl with the big, kinky hair.  Only then it wasn't chic on trend to say "kinky", unless of course you were talking about...something else.  Anyway, I wasn't dark enough, if you will, to be ostracized by my complexion or called vile, complex-inducing names like "tar baby", "nappy-headed  monkey", etc.  And while those comments weren't directed at me personally, I did hear them thrust upon the classmate standing to the right of me....who was a mere 2  shades darker.  And as an often card-carrying member of the "Invisible Friend Club", I have watched with abashe envy more times tha  I care to count a boy nearly knock me over to get to my pale-skinned friend.  "You light-bright!" " You RED!  You sexy, Red!"  Now don't get me wrong, I got my share of male attention as well, but it was often prefaced with the requisite "You're cute for a darkskinned girl!"  Ugh!!!  That was the worst!   Was that supposed to be a compliment, my equally pigmented dumb brother?  I mean, that has got to be one of the biggest backhanded compliments you can give a person.  Right up there with "For a cripple with one leg, you sure can dance, girl!"  As if my richly-hued skin somehow automatically disqualified me as being attractive.  (Like, awww I will never be Jet Beauty of the Week!)   And then there was the matter of my hair.  It was not naturally straight nor blonde.   It was black.  And poofy.  And to add insult to injury, I was shy.  That was the main thing that haunted me - I couldn't shake the shyness.  I have 2 siblings that have very outgoing in-your-face personalities, and you will know it when they walk into a room.  We should have been cut from the same cloth, coming from the same 2 parents and all, but I walk into a room....and I'm already looking for the nearest exits.  I'm not so much like that now - I had to really work on overcoming being shy.  I had friends, indeed, but I also had trust issues.  I also had self-esteem issues.

As a young girl, flipping through the pages of "Seventeen" and  other magazines where the faces smiling back at me didn't look like mine, the whole issue of beauty was very sensitive for me.  I never publicly made it an issue, but when I looked in the mirror, I cursed that my skin was not 2 shades lighter, and the fact that I couldn't threaten my hair into submission.  And then it happened....

One day I had a talk w/ my aunt who was visiting from New York.  Complexion wise, she was light, bright, and.... you know the rest.  Anyway, with sandy brown/blonde hair and green/blue-ish grey eyes in tow, she was often told she looked like the-beauty-queen-formerly-known-as-Miss-America Vanessa Williams.  We stayed up late one night talking about education, colleges, and sororities.  My aunt, a longtime card-carrying member of the AKA sorority, was giving me her recruitment spiel the history of the AKA's when I asked, "Aren't I too dark to become an AKA?"  After her 2-HOUR REFUTEMENT, she let slip the insecurities that she herself had had growing up as a lightskinned Black woman.  Not just the often-heard stories of jealousy from others, but her own personal issues and insecurities.   I specifically remember looking at her like she had 2 heads!  Why on earth would she, in all her lightskinned glory, have self-esteem issues?   I had never heard such a paradox before!  Well, we ended up comparing notes and that's when the EPIPHANY came:

We ALL have issues as children.  Black, White, Team Darkskinned, Team Lightskinned, Red-Haired ("It's a  GINGER KID!!!" Thank you SOUTH PARK), Tall, Short, Fat, Skinny....that is what youth is all about.   Being insecure and having issues and self-esteem problems.  But eventually outgrowing and overcoming them.  Turning what you perceive to be a weakness into a strength.    My parents also helped me greatly in this regard so that by the time I got into 9th or 10th grade - girl, I was loving myself some me.  I now described my skintone to people by referencing my favorite childhood crayon in the 64-crayon box:  "You never heard of Burnt Sienna?  It's the color of skin kissed by the Caribbean sun, yo!"  That was an actual quote.  From me.  That was how I described my skin.  And as for MY HAIR? Sure, I now wore it relaxed, like every other Black girl in that era, but I was so appreciating my hair.  The thickness, the length,...and by then I had discovered Denise Huxtable (remember the "Gordon Gartrell" episode?), who I believed to be my long-lost fashion twin.  And my inner fashionista came to the fore, meshing with my outer geek.  So now I was the still-shy-weird-girl-with-the-even-weirder-but-cute-clothes in the corner, talking to my 5 friends and ignoring the male attention that I too was now getting.   When classmates walked by and said "Hey Chicki!", I didn't shrink back and attempt to disappear in my locker.  Shoulders straight and head held high, I responded, though admittedly in a much softer decibel than necessary, "Heeey! How are you?"

You see, I guess the point of this painfully long, hard to read, ramble is this: sometimes you have to be taught how to love yourself.  And sometimes you have to teach others to do the same.  For some, self-love isn't always innate.  In today's world of airbrushing, plastic surgery, and all things Kardashian, we may have to help our young ones accept and own their beauty.  And their talents.  Even their weirdness.  The media for sure will tell them that they do not measure up and are not good enough.  They will learn that for whatever reason, they are inferior to the next guy.  That is what they are being taught.  We can teach them otherwise.

* What self-esteem issues did you have to overcome growing up?

Friday, November 23, 2012

Respect the Rules, People. RESPECT them!

That's it! I'm writing a how-to manual on Black Friday.  There are some people out there who have absolutely no clue how to participate and partake in the "opening ceremonies" of Black Friday - the painful, dreaded tradition of "Standing Online" (also known by it's southern cousin, "standing INline").  Allow me to educate any of you out there who are walking around all willy-nilly and clueless, thinking you can just walk up on any given 2-mile long line outside any given store on Black Friday and just.start.speaking to folk.  Gangnam Style!  This is not so much my personal Black Friday manifesto, but there are unwritten rules that should must not only be respected, but followed.  To the letter.  Lesgo:

1.) Keep your personal conversations at a lower decibel.  I know.  Right now you are thinking "who does this heifer think she is? A person's conversation is their business."  Exactly my point.  Your business, and no one else wants to hear it. People have waited all year long for Black Friday, and have gotten out of bed early, or in some cases (as was mine) never went to sleep at all.....just to stand outside a store's parking the the cold...mentally strategizing their game plan for when they actually get inside said store.  All of this requires concentration.  Please don't muck it up for them with your endless barrage of insipid anecdotes - they do not amuse.  Keep your Black Friday energy raised, but your voice low.

 2.) Please keep your conversations to yourself.   I know.  Sounds like the same as rule #1, right?  Not quite.  This rule is not about talking low - it's about talking to me.  Or should I say "please stop talking to me."  Listen, we are all here to SHOP, not make friends.  So besides the requisite exchange of pleasantries,  Please limit your conversation(s) to the person you came with.

And the last and perhaps most delicate rule of all.......

3.) WHO FARTED?????????  This one is self-expanatory. Control your bodily malfunctions.  Plain and simple.

Respect the rules, people.  Respect the rules.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

The Sister Tag


I told guys I have a sister, didn't I?  Yeah, I introduced you to her in a previous post some time ago.  Anyway, I was on the phone with her while surfing the net, and came across this "sister tag."  And since I already let slip that I secretly love don't mind tags, I decided to do it with my sister.  So here goes:
  1. Describe each other in one word?  H.U.S.T.L.E.R.  "Put it all together, what does that spell? Mia.
  2. Do people ever get you mixed up?  No. She is 5'9 and I am almost 5'2.
  3. What is something that annoys you about each other?  Her Jedi-Mind Trick game is strong.  She can be very convincing when she wants something.
  4. Do you ever argue?   Uh, you mean do we ever not?
  5. What's the best thing about one another?  Even when she's strong-arming me or getting on my last nerve, I know she has my best interest  at heart and will always have my back.
  6. Dish the dirt (on the sister).   Well, my sister is a bit of a drama queen.  And she will know that I mean that in the best possible way.  She is an A.C.T.R.E.S.S. thru-and-thru.  If she ever got her SAG card, she'd be deadly.
  7. Fave inside joke.   Can't. So many jokes, so little time.  We are always speaking in code and quoting movie lines when talking about referencing people.
  8. Fave memory together.  So many memories, so little time.  But if I have to name 2, here goes: My parents went out of town when I was about 13 and Mia was in charge, of course.  I had a friend spend the night and we were renting movies.  The friend wanted to see Eddie Murphy RAW, but we weren't allowed to watch rated R movies.  So we rented it anyay without the big sister's knowledge and snuck it into the house.  When the sister walked into the room and saw what we were watching, I tried to show off in front of my friend and gave the sister lip.  Well, the sister (fave tag line: "you wouldn't like me when I'm angry") is several inches taller than me and has a mean Lennox Lewis reach - she balled picked me up and threw me out of the window slammed me against the back door.  I was limping for 2 days.
  9. Full sisters/half/step?  100% FULL, baby.  At least that's what we've been told, though I've always had my suspicions.....
  10. Guess each other's fave singer?  Her's is MARY J. BLIGE or KEISHA COLE
  11. Who takes longer to get ready?  Well, I'm often late and she's always early, so I'm going to say...HER.  Though I'm the late one, it doesn't actually take me long to get ready.  It's all the other crap I'm doing that sidetracks me......
  12. Heels or flats?  For me, HEELS ALL DAY LONG, baby.  For her, flats or a lower heel.  My God, the woman's already an Amazon Glam-azon.
  13. Pants or dresses?   For me, DRESSES ALL DAY LONG, baby.  For her, pants. (Cause you know, you can't really fight in a dress....Just kidding Mia.  please don't beat me up.)
  14. Favorite animal?  We aren't really animal people, didn't grow up with pets.  But for me, it's SHARKS ALL DAY LONG, baby.  Loved sharks and fish since childhood.  For sister, it's all about the TURTLE/TORTOISE.  She loves loves loves them...even has a silver turtle ring.
  15. If your house was burning down and your entire family was sure to be okay, what would you save and why?   I would save my Bible, my journals, fireplace picture of my parents, 2 DVD's: JAWS and ANCHORMAN: THE LEGEND OF RON BURGUNDY, my recent favorite  purchase- my purple SNUGGIE (because if I'm going to be homeless, I can at least be comfortable, right?)  The sister would save her pet turtle/tortoise Bernie.
  16. Comedy, horror, or chick-flick?   I DO NOT watch horror, despise most chick-flicks (let us not count "The Notebook") and I love love love comedies.  I love foreign flicks and documentaries as well.  The sister is all about the chick-flicks.
  17. Blackberry or I-Phone?  FLIP Phone.  You heard me right, I said flip phone. I've never had a Blackberry, I have no interest in the I-Phone as I have an Android, but I just want a regular phone phone.  Out of all the cell phones that I've had, the flip is still my favorite.  No bells and whistles to sidetrack you.  I'm running going back to my flip phone. The sister might say Blackberry.
  18. Favorite movie?  For me, hands down.....JAWS.  All day long, baby.  The sister might say "Emma", "Sense and Sensibility", "Pride and Prejudice", etc. etc.  Basically anything Jane Austen-ish.
  19. What is something weird that you eat?  Hmmm, I love most ethnic foods so the sister would say everything I eat is weird.  As for what she eats that is weird,...chitterlings. Chitlins.  Nag-ty.
  20. Do you guys have anything matching?  Not sure.
  21. Favorite tv show?   Sister's favorite is "Scandal", I cannot narrow mine down to just 1 but I rarely miss (whether live or taped) "SNL" (Saturday Night Live).
  22. How old are you both?  She is 4 years older than me.  I am 4 years younger than she.

* The sister has an AWESOME blog as well.  Check her out at:

Sunday, November 11, 2012

"It Ain't Fiction, Just a Natural Fact. And thank you, Paula Abdul."

Sometimes we complicate things for ourselves.  We create chaos in our own lives, and then wonder where it came from.  Especially when it comes to our personal relationships.  Sure, we all claim to want to live drama-free existences, but then we seek relationships with others that are anything but.  Opposites attract.  Absolutely.  But really, how long does that attraction last?  How long do opposites stay together

When looking for someone of the opposite sex, why don't we look for someone who will balance us out?  She's the party girl who always wants to go out and have a good time.  He's the bookworm in the corner who somehow mistakenly ended up at the party.  Sure, that might be an instant attraction, but how long will that connection last?  How long before she tires of him never accompanying her to the next soiree?  How long before he realizes that he just wants a nice girl that will settle down with him and enjoy the alone-time togetherness?   That is not balance.  That is opposites attracting.  Balance is the bookworm helping the party girl to realize and appreciate the intimacy that only a party of two can bring, or the bookworm  himself realizing that sometimes it's ok to push beyond your comfort zone and just enjoy strangers with candy at a social gathering.  Because with balance comes growth, and both parties are better persons because of it.

Having had a whole two relationships in my adult life (no that was not a typo, and yes I did say two), I'm definitely not offering up any sage-like counsel, so that's not what this post is about.  When it comes to matters of the heart, I'm only qualified to speak on my own.  And sometimes I'm not really qualified then, either. But I can say, unequivocally, without a doubt, I am a person who does not care for a lot of chaos.  I like peace.  "As far as it depends on me", I try to pursue peaceful relationships in my personal life.  When drama or issues do come up, however, I do not run and I do not avoid them.  I tackle the issue head on ("HEAD ON FOR HEADACHES....HEAD ON FOR HEADACHES.....") and try to move on.  Move on as in continue the relationship with that person, wheels in motion.  But.....sometimes you can't move on with that person.  Sometimes you just have to move on from that person.  Specifically when said person asks you to move on from them. 

See, we as women like to talk about how men are such complicated creatures who are always playing mind games.  Sometimes that may be true, but oftentimes it isn't.  Men are just like women when it comes to relationships.   As women, we typically don't have any problem vocalizing our concerns or expressing our needs in a relationship.  But just because we speak louder doesn't mean that our partner doesn't have a voice or use it when deeming it necessary.  We just don't listen.  Oh, we hear what's being said, for a certainty, but we choose not to listen.  We hear what we want to hear.  And therein lies the problem, ladies and gentlemen. 

We've all heard the witty colloquialism: "When a person shows you what/who they are, believe them", right?   But how many of us actually heed this a gospel?  Your man says "I don't believe in marriage."  YOU HEAR: "I've never met anyone I've wanted to marry...until I met you, boo."  Your man says, emphatically, "I don't ever see myself getting married and I'll remain a bachelor til the day I die!"  YOU HEAR: "Thus far, I've never met a woman I've wanted to spend forever and ever and ever with.  Until, of course, I met you, boo." Your man says "All men cheat, yo!"  YOU HEAR: "While it does seem as though an inordinate amount of my brethren are grimy scumbags, you should be aware that I am not of that sort. Not even a little bit."  Classic case of a woman editing a man's truest thoughts to fit her needs.  What she should have heard was this: "Listen,.....I won't be committing to you anytime soon because you are one of many women that I am seeing.  I am not leading you on so don't even think about making me look like the bad guy cause I'm telling you this outright."  And he would be correct.  He is not ready.  He may never be ready.  And perhaps the hardest and most painful to admit:  You are are not The One. You are not His One.  You are the weakest link, goodbye!"

I get it.  No one likes failure.  But failure is not letting go of something or someone that doesn't want to be there.  The real failure is attempting to hold on to something or someone that asks to be let go of.   They say "nothing beats a failure but a try."  Some (or Yoda) say "there is no try - only do."  Whatever the case may be....whether you tried....or you did....there is no shame in admitting accepting defeat.  You heard what that man said, and he meant what he said.  Now put on your big girl panties, take your bow, and exit stage left.  The show must go on.  And it will.  Perhaps just not on this stage.

Sunday, November 4, 2012


....and what about LOVE?  Live, Learn, Love are usually used inseparably.  Looking at this picture, I couldn't help but notice that the leaf is slightly heart-shaped.  As humans, we were created in God's image, so we were created with the ability to love.  To give love, and to receive love.  We crave love.  We need love.  Maybe that's why my eye went straight to the greenery and saw a heart.  I guess subconsciously, that's what I wanted to see.  I guess.  Now, I don't wanna get all 'sappy' here so let me throw out this disclaimer: I'm not big on love poems, romance movies (though I'm not gonna lie - I loved "The Notebook"....and even cried. wow.) and the like.  However, one of my favorite poems is called "Love Is Not All" by Edna St. Vincent Millay.  An excerpt:

"Yet many a man is making friends with death,....for lack of love alone."

I have loved this amazing poem for years and I implore you to google it if you've never heard of it.  Basically, the poem speaks of the irony of  All of what it's not, yet all of what it is.  Love is not tangible, there is no sustenance nor salvation behind love. there?  Love is not everything.  Or....isn't it? 

Love is a paradox indeed, and I, like many people, am not sure how I feel about love.  I am human, so I guess I do want it.  To give it and receive it.  But crave?  Ehhhh...... 

I guess the point of this random rambling is: How do you know when you've found love?  When you met your husband/wife/significant other, how did you know they were the One?  How did you know it was

Can a square peg in a round hole result in love?  Who knows.  Who cares, really.  I guess you learn as you go, and maybe that's the whole point of life.  You live and you learn.  And maybe love isn't everything.  Love is not all. it?

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Girl (Keeps Getting) Interruped.....

Let me stop COMING AND GOING like this!!!  I feel so cheesy.  I have been away too long and we all know that absence usually does not make the heart grow fonder, despite the popular saying.  I've come to see that I SUCK at blogging.  I can admit that.  When I first started this blog, I started off strong, posting every day or so with fervor.  I'll do a blog post, go away for 1 month, come back and say "I'm back" - only to disappear for another 3 months.  I'm like that.  A friend once called me a submarine.  She said "you rise to the surface for a while, and then submerge for 2 months...but I still love you girl. That's just you, Chicki Tee, and I accept that."  I was mortified. What an awful trait to have, albeit true. The problem is that while I'm not a loner, I am more than comfortable being by myself.  Don't get me wrong, I love my friends and I enjoy their company, but sometimes I definitely prefer my me time.  Truth be told, I'm actually kinda over my me time and I'm ready for some we time.  As in,...well, we'll save that for the next post.

So anyway, I do love blogging, but I keep getting sidetracked with other things.  Namely LIFE.  I don't process stress well, and what started out as a fun way to deal with stress and document my weight-loss endeavors ended up being thrown aside. I have a hard time maintaining focus - I did tell ya'll way back when that I'm ADD, right?  You thought I was playing?  But I am back and this time for good.  I bought a new laptop, a new camera (Nikon DSLR), and I got a new attitude ("ooh ooh ooh ooh ooooohhh"....cue Patti LaBelle) and so I'm ready to roll.  I've vowed to start blogging a minimum of 2-3x's a week because I really want to show you more of who I am and what I('m trying to) do.  I also want to start interacting with readers and with other bloggers, so feel free to hit me up if you have any questions or comments.

So, what have you been up to?

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Holy Benadryl, Batman!!!!

I'm baaaack!  Again.  Please excuse the long absence, but this time I have a great excuse: I had a major health crisis I was dealing with.  True story, but I'll try to make this quick since ya'll know I have the tendancy towards rambling.....In the last few months I have seen more needles and have been poked & prodded more than I have ever been in my life.  It seemed like I couldn't even drive past a hospital without them having to draw blood from me, and due to severe anemia, I had to undergo an 8-hr. iron infusion.  Holy Benadryl, Batman....8 hours? you ask?  Yes, cyberfriends, I did say 8 hours.  2 of them spent in a Benadryl-induced coma (they give you a Benadryl drip in the IV in case you have an allergic reaction), and the other 6 hours reading, texting, and praying I didn't have breast cancer.

Whaaat????  Did she say cancer?  I did indeed.  Cancer.  The Big C.  One of my greatest fears.  The iron infusion was merely to get my blood levels up so that I could have a lumpectomy - surgical removal of a large mass/lump found in my right breast (my "lucky breast" deemed by my doctor, as I've had two prior surgeries on this very breast).  Like many people, cancer runs on both sides of my family, and my paternal grandmother died of breast cancer.  As mentioned, my first "brush" with breast cancer was in 1998, my second was 2010 (another lump and another surgery of sorts), my third was 2012, and who knows when my 4th brush will be.  Right now, I'm just grateful that I do not have cancer.  And I'm trying to take better care of myself - drinking more water as often as I can stomach daily, eating more fruits and vegetables, and I've joined a gym. (Coincidentally, two of my favorite things both begin with the letters "PF" - Planet Fitness and PF Chang's. Polar opposites. smh.)  I'm also trying to reduce or at the very least control the amount of stress in my life.  Hard to do in today's world, ain't it?  But do whatever you must to protect your health.  Control the things you can control.  Give the other things to God.  And be grateful for the friends and family who have supported you along the way.  It's good to be back!

* Fun Fact: Two years ago, one of the local news stations did a feature on me and my experience to raise breast cancer awareness.  Awesome experience!  And shout-out to Barbara Ciara, one of the baddest anchors to evvvvver report the news.  Ron Burgundy ain't got nothing on this woman.  I mean,....she's "kind of a big deal."  Google the video, ya'll! :-)

Sunday, March 11, 2012

So I did a wee bit of shopping two weeks ago.  Just a few accessories (remember I'm saving my dollars to move in a few) - nothing serious.  I wouldn't call this a haul but here's what I got:
Cheap earrings - $2/pr.
Same ones in silver.
Silver bells. I call these "the grapes of wrath". I think these were $2 or $3 also. Mad cheap.
Tortoise specs.
I'd been wanting a leopard-print scarf and found this one at Ross for about $8-$9 bucks! Very pretty & iridescent and the camera just does not do it justice.
Another angle.
Ok, can I just say how much I looooooove these shoes???  I'm a shoe gal from waaay back, and as I'm only 5'1 (and a half) - anything 4 inches or more is perfect for me. Plus I'm always in flats at work, but on the weekends you can always find me in heels and in somebody's shoe department.

A lovely yellow suitcase purse from TJ Maxx.  I'm not the kind of gal who changes bags with outfits, but when I see a purse that I like, I get it and will rock it with everything...whether it matches or not. smh.
I think that's about it, give or take a few items. I'm off to watch the Oprah interview with Bobby Kristina. Have a good night, ladies! :-)

Saturday, March 10, 2012

"And a Real Man Just Can't Deny...a Woman's Worth."

I just saw a quote that read: "You shouldn't have to fight for a spot in someone's life. Never force someone to make a space in their life for you, because if they know your worth, they will create one for you."

Well said.  However, if YOU know YOUR worth, you will not wait for them to figure it out. Layman's terms: He's not checking for you, boo. Stop checking for him.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

TAG Time - Round 2 (*in Apollo Creed's voice: "Ding.Ding.")

Ok, it's tag time again. Also known as "SlamBook" revisited. Let's get to it, shall we?

1. If you had to choose a world without fashion or a world without music, which would you choose ?  
Without question - a world without fashion.  Fashion is subjective but music is everything. There is so much power in music - the power to transform a person's moods and emotions, transport them to far-flung countries, the power to heal, and is just very necessary to my personal existence.

2. Have you accomplished any of your life goals? 
Yes. Deliberately evasive.  And I'm working on accomplishing more. Three to be specific.

3. What's the meaning of LOVE to you?
1 Cor. 13 aside, LOVE is "the soul's recognition of it's counterpoint in another". Thank you WEDDING CRASHERS.  Love is being with a person that you are comfortable being yourself around. Being and seeing one at their best and their worst and still wanting more, having someone's back and knowing they have your's as well, handing your heart over to someone else and trusting that they will do right by it. Love is honest. Love is raw. Love is uninhibited. Love is looking out for the other person's interests before those of your own. Love is not shallow, it is very deep.  Love is reciprocol. Love is demonstrative.  Love is exposing yourself as vulnerable but liking the feeling nonetheless.  Love is hard work.  Anything worth having involves hard work. Love is up and down and all over the place, yet stable nonetheless. Basically, look up the lyrics to Prince's song "Adore" and there you will find a perfect definition of love.

4. If you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would it be? 
Hmmm,...that's a tough one.  Maybe Portugal. Or Trinidad.

5. Who's the biggest inspiration in your life right now?
ME.  I have been stagnant for a minute, but I am now moving in a direction that I really like.  I am
taking control of "the controllables" and I am growing as a person and it feels really really good.  I am proud to say that I am inspiring myself.

6. What's your favorite thing about blogging? 
I used to be a somewhat closed and guarded person due to a few trust issues.  Blogging has allowed me to open up and expose my vulnerability and learn to trust more.  Even though I have a small blog, I can see the personal growth that has come from blogging.  I also like communicating with other bloggers/readers.
7. What's your favorite thing out of anything you own? 
Hmm,...that's a tough one.  If my house was burning and I could only save one thing (family aside), I don't really know what it would be.  One of my (seven hundred or so) JOURNALS maybe.
8. Do you believe in fate?
Absolutely not.
9. What's your favorite song? 
Prince's "ADORE".  Hands down -  As in ever.  Pure unadulterated raw emotion in that song.  Those lyrics ("until the end of time, I'll be there for you. You own my heart and mind, I truly adore you...."

10. Jeans or dresses ? 
Hands down, dresses.  While definitely not prissy, I am a girly girl and I have always loved dresses.  And heels.
11. What's your favorite food?  Steak.  Specifically RIBEYE.  Favorite type of food is Caribbean.  Or really any dish involving a rice and bean - I'm a rice and bean chick from waaay back. (though I usually discard the bean. I love the taste the beans give but hate the texture.)

Penny Loves Kenny

Celebrating Your Losses = SHOPPING!!!!

Cutting Your Losses = SHOPPING!!!!

I lost 8 pounds over the last week and a half - WOO HOO!!!  Go me. But at the same time, I also lost someone in my life that I really cared about.  Awww... (tears) (not a story for the blog) So after shedding my first and last tear of 2012 (one can only hope), yesterday I found myself at TJ Maxx, Marshall's and Ross's for a little RETAIL THERAPY.  Then I remembered I'm on a strict budget as I'm trying to move in the next 2-3 months, so I couldn't do too much damage. crap.  But guess what?  At Ross I found a pair beautiful nude shoes on the cheap!  I generally don't care for cork heels, but these were so girly and cute that I could not resist.  I'm working on getting my body ready for warmer weather and all things sundresses so why not, right?  And the $16.99 price tag?  Even better.  

Letting go is hard.  So is love.  But Penny loves Kenny.  And so did/does Chicki. :-(

Monday, January 2, 2012

"Viva La Vida"

"I used to rule the world...seas would rise when I gave the in the morning I sleep alone...sweep the streets that I used to own." - Coldplay ("Viva La Vida")

I know a guy who had a good job writing for the local newspaper.  Evidently he was not living his dream and decided to follow his true passion doing something else.  He quit his job, moved away, and is now working in his chosen field.  His Facebook status update is as follows:

"Wow!  It's been two years since I decided to change everything!  I took control of my unhappiness and started a new life!  It was scary, challenging, painful and confusing at first and now...the best thing I ever did.  I'm so much stronger than I ever knew and you probably are too but you'll never know until you get off your a55..."

This may be a big "duhhh" to some and not profound at all, but I found it to be very inspiring.  Exactly what I needed to hear on this 2nd day of 2012.  I went to the beach today for a workout on the sand, which by the way, is quite a workout.  Running/fitness walking on sand is no joke - my thighs were/are killing me!  Anyway, as I walked while listening to Coldplay's "The Scientist" and "Viva La Vida" on repeat on the ipod, I kept reflecting on his words.  The ability to take a scary, painful challenge and turn it into something beautiful   (and very necessary) is within my power.  "A change [ain't] gon' come" unless I make it happen.  Fortunately for me, I'm that chica who accepts all challenges.  I am sooo looking forward to 2012.  Let's get it!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

"Everything In It's Right Place" (radiohead)

I'm trying to become less wordy and more succinct in 2012.  That may be slightly difficult for a gal like me, being as I'm the poster child for ADULT ADD and all, but no worries - I'm always down for a dare and I accept all challenges.  Anyhoo, in the quest for brevity, I'll just say this: I accomplished some pretty decent goals in 2011, but 2012 will be even.better.  I only have 3 goals I plan to accomplish:

  1. GET MOVING (weight loss. enough said. i started the day off w/ a workout. only 364 days to go....)
  2. GET PAID (plain and simple: i need more money. my 9-5 alone is not cutting it. fortunately i have a plethora of "money-making" creative skills/talent that i can turn into a profitable hustle...i just have to do it. for real. stay focused and stay the course)
  3. GET OUT (i need to move in 2012. i have to move in 2012. i'm ready to move in 2012. ain't nothing to it but to do it. for real.)
And that's it folks. That's all I'm working towards in 2012.  Anything else that comes is a bonus. Let's get it.

* What do you plan on accomplishing in 2012?