February 19, 2015

#TBT Edition: First Lady... Ready or Not!

It was a Saturday afternoon... about seven years ago, while riding on a train in NYC, a musician was playing a beautiful song in my train car. I don't remember which instrument he was playing, but I do remember enjoying it! I remember feeling as though he were one of the most talented subway musicians around. As he walked throughout the train car to collect donations for his 'performance', he stopped in front of me. Unfortunately, I did not have anything for him, but he apparently had something for me. He began to speak to my spirit, words of encouragement and validation. 

-Now, under normal circumstances, great performance or not, there's NO WAY that I would have been comfortable with it, nor would I have received any type of message from a stranger on the train in NYC... Certainly not a pan-handler! I'd learned, after moving to Bed-Stuy several years prior, to rock my 'NYC grill'... Especially for these types of situations! You know, that expression that anyone moving to NYC must must adopt in order to fit in, because God forbid you're actually caught smiling in the streets and speaking to strangers! ...lol! The expression that says what true New Yorkers say so effortlessly, "I am NOT approachable; leave me alone!"-

However, the peace that came upon me through his words confirmed that it was, indeed, a message sent from God... An on-time one at that! He confirmed many things for me, as if he were able to see through my 'grill'... straight to my heart. He ended the prophecy with, "You are a First Lady... You hear me? A First Lady!"

Well, I received that prophecy. Although the messenger wasn't typical, I was still able to identify the spirit from which the message came. Funny thing is I knew I wasn't ready to be a First Lady, so I began questioning if maybe he meant it metaphorically. Now... seven years later and still single, I'm realizing that God also knew I wasn't ready, and DUH, that's exactly why I'm still single! As much as I've wanted to join the marriage ranks and circles of some of my besties, I understand that He is still working on me! My trials, my tests, my droughts... It's all for my making! 

I am grateful and so excited to see what the future holds, because I know that GREATER is coming! And as far as that First Lady hat... I think I'm juussstt about ready to wear it! I guess we'll soon see the context of that Word that was brought to me that Saturday afternoon... and the blessings that it will bring. Either way, you already know...

I will do it with Style, and seal it with a Kiss!!

February 5, 2015

In Honor of TBT... Here's a REPOST...

When There's More in His Closet Than Suits and Ties... (A Little Thursday Humor...lol)

More and more we're finding that our men, our friends' men, or just men we happen to know as otherwise HETERO... are GAY!!! OMG!!! WTF!!!

Have you ever been in a situation that was a bit uncomfortable for you accept? Has your man ever done or said something that was an automatic RED FLAG... but either in denial, OR an effort to not humiliate him, OR in respect of his E.G.O... OR just total shock, you let it slide??

Have you ever wondered... even for a half-second... if your man was GAY? Worried that what your friends keep saying about him being too pretty to be STRAIGHT, may actually be TRUE!! Does it totally freak you out to think that his "Feminine Touch" may come from something other than growing up w/a house full of gals? ...Because after all, "Can't Nobody... Love You Better... Make You Happy... Make You Feel This WA-AYYY!!"

Well ladies, it's time to Open Up His Closet Doors... and really take a look inside! Here are a few things to look for... lol!! (Insert Wendy's sound effects for the ultimate hilarious experience!) FYI...While some of the signs seem obvious, many women are blinded by LOVE!

1) He listens to Wendy Williams everyday at work, and has officially begun to say "How U Doin'??" on a regular basis!! ("Aurriight!!")

2) His eyes are absolutely gorgeous... always have been, but you actually start to think that you see mascara on them tonight!!! (...GASP!!! ...now BREATHE!!!) No way!!! So you pretend to remove something from the corner of his eye, and almost faint when you see a trace of black on your finger tip!! ("I like boys")

3) His mani-pedi routine has become more regular than yours, and he even agrees to getting a WAX with you!! ("How U doin'??")

4) His fashion sense is better than yours! ...and I don't just mean that he has great taste!! ("Aurriight!")

5) The two of you are out to dinner, and after a few drinks you find his eyes wandering. You decide, after the second time, to turn around and see this sexy chick that's got your drunk man's attention... ONLY TO FIND OUT THAT IT"S ANOTHER MAN!!!!! ("I-I-I-I-I-I-I... I'm GAY!!!")

6) One or more of his closest male friends is GAY!! ("I like boys!")

7) He has EVER referred to you as, or started a sentence with, "Gurrll..." or "Chillle..."!! (Aurriight!")

8) You go out to a karaoke bar, and after you have just finished belting out your own rendition of I Am Telling You, your man comes behind you... kisses you on the neck and takes the mic away from you. You're so excited that he's actually agreed to sing this time, but when the music starts to play, you can't help but think that they've got the wrong song. UNTIL HE STARTS TO SING!!! Why is your man singing Aretha's version of I Will Survive!! "At first I was afraid, I was petrified..." is definitely what's going on in your head RIGHT NOW!!! ("How U Doin'?")

9) He's been spending more time with TYRONE!!! ...and unless, or shall I say even if Tyrone is really Tiffany, you've got yourself a bit of a situation here!! New sound effect required for this one... ("To the Left, To the Left!!")

10) You've agreed to bring some freak into the bedroom and to role-play his secret fantasy... only you don't know what it is yet. It can't be that bad though, because you told him that you were only down if it didn't involve a third party. SUPRIIISSE!!!!! He came home with a sexy fire girl costume, and (DRUMROLL!!!) ...a STRAP-ON!! ("I-I-I-I-I-I-I-I'm GAY!!!")

OK... now what do you do if you realize that the signs are CLEAR... the flags are IN YOUR FACE... and you're suddenly HEARTBROKEN??? Unfortunately, there's not much that you can do... there's no "Working this out!" ...You can't put it on him any better, and expect him to CHANGE!! You have to GET OUT! ...NOW! ...I SAID NOW!!!

This may be one of the ONLY situations where you two can truly benefit from 'just being friends'!

(shout-out to Wendy Williams... friend in my head!! ...even though I can totally see us having a love/hate relationship!! Gotta love her...lol!) 

**...BTW, This original post was written during her WBLS radio show days... you'd need to be familiar to fully understand the sound effects!**

January 24, 2015

Quote of the Day...

The hardest job kids face today is learning good manners without seeing any.
-Fred Astaire

Something to think about! Are you doing your part to ensure that you are setting a positive example for the children in your family and community?! Even when you don't realize it... they're watching you!

Do it with Style, and Seal it with a Kiss!

January 16, 2015

Natural Hair Chronicles...

So I was recently asked about my 'Big Chop' and transition to having natural, unrelaxed, unprocessed black girl hair... 
However, I wouldn't call what I did the 'big chop', since I continually cut my permed ends off over a period of time. 

It took me about 11 months to grow out my relaxer while maintaining a decent length of hair (chin length bob). I found that my hair grew much faster without a relaxer than it ever did with one. Luckily for me, since I really had ZERO interest in cutting all of my hair off! The real big chop was not an option for me. I did, however, wear a half wig for most of those 11 months while in transition. It was a great way for me to allow my hair to have a break, as I only kept the front bang out to blend while the rest stayed braided. It also allowed me to stay 'corporate' and 'comfortable' during the transition stage where I had absolutely no clue what to do with my hair!  When I wasn't wearing the half wig, I did a braid-set... cornrowing my hair back while wet (one of my favorite styles with and without a relaxer). 

I continued to use the same products that I used when I had a relaxer - Creme of Nature Moisturizing shampoo, Pantene conditioner, and Moroccan oil - and I had a single stylist and washer at the salon, since I found it really difficult to wash my hair by myself. I might also add that although I made the decision to go natural (aka without a relaxer or any other chemicals in my hair), I still loved my straight hair, and I really didn't know what to do with it otherwise. Needless to say, I was a 'natural who straightens' for the first four years, only really allowing my hair to 'just be' in the summertime... Curly ponytails and messy up-do's forced by humidity. Otherwise, I would get a wash and blow, and my hair would be just as straight as when I had a perm, so that was perfect for me. The problem came when I wanted to start doing the 'wash-and-go' that so many other natural divas were doing. I quickly noticed that my curl patterns were all over the place because I had been straightening!

So one day, I just decided to allow my hair to be free... Let it 'do what it do'! Since I was free-lancing and working mostly from home at the time, that decision came easily. I didn't need my hair straightened as often, nor could I afford it as often anyway. Although the back of my hair was still more tightly coiled than the rest of my hair, I began to see more of a consistency in my curl pattern when I stopped straightening it... and I loved it! I still straighten my hair about 3-4 times a year, so that I can trim it, but I can finally say that I'm actually beginning to EMBRACE my natural 'do! Curly, frizzy, big, or straight... Braided, twisted, or slicked into a neat bun... There is no way I'd be able to enjoy this versatility with relaxed hair. It's amazing!

Even at 7 years, it's still a journey! I go to Youtube to view all of the podcasts available for style and product tips, and I'm always looking for a new 'do! I'll be getting Senegalese twists as a 'protective style' to give my hair a winter break. I don't have any pics posted on here, but feel free to hit me up if you have any questions. Maybe I'll post pics in a later entry...
Btw... my fave products now are...
-Carol's Daughter Black Vanilla Sulfate-free Shampoo... I've just come to realize that 'sulfate-free' shampoos are the best!
-TRESemme Conditioner Flawless Curls
-Pantene 'truly Natural hair' CoWash
-Cantu Shea Butter Leave-in Conditioning Cream... Great for my twist-outs
-Moroccan Oil Treatment (the original brand is the best and smells lovely, but it's rather expensive) Garnier Fructis and Organix also have great versions of the oil
-Coconut Oil... Any organic or all natural brand
-Ecco Olive Oil gel (green tinted)
If you're considering going natural, I say DO IT!! Unless you do a 'big chop', that transitional period can be extremely discouraging. Two different textures are not easy to deal with! You may even find yourself ready to get that relaxer touch-up again. Trust me I know!! I actually had three failed attempts before I made the full commitment! But gurrrrlllll, am I so glad I did (and so is my scalp, by the way)!! 
Keep in mind, that the decision to go natural does not have to be about Afros and Black Power, although ain't nothin' wrong with either! It is, however, as much of a lifestyle change as becoming a vegetarian... Or deciding to eat healthy, in general. When we eliminate toxins from our bodies, both inside and out, we are allowing our bodies to thrive in ways that can improve our overall health, beauty, and confidence! Be good to your body and your hair, and they will be good to you!!
However you choose to rock your 'do, just make sure that it's clean and healthy!! And please remember this...
Do it with STYLE, and seal it with a KISS!

January 2, 2013

Nail it Every Time!

OK, so we're Super Busy Superwomen... does that really excuse us from missing the mark on beauty? Absolutely NOT!! We're still fabulous, and must maintain a certain level of 'fabulosity' and class at all times!

I'm going to have to say that there are not too many things that I hate more than to see a well put-together, beautiful, professional woman with obviously chipped nail polish!!! URGHH! ...and to say that it's in the name of fashion is a complete insult and total beauty faux-pas!! Unless you're in costume, on a runway, or just going for the "I'm a nervous, irresponsible, immature wreck who picks at her nail polish and thinks that it's OK... AND I couldn't care less about my image nor what you think about what my image is portraying" -look,  there is no real-life trend that warrants a chipped nail! So fine... that might be a bit extreme, but really, if you're over 21 and would like to be taken seriously as a lady (in life, work, dating, fashion, etc...) then you should really not act oblivious to the big deals that the simple details carry! 

As women, we're naturally ready for the normal beauty slip-ups. We carry our most beautiful bag of tricks, fully equipped for that unfortunate moment. "Oh no, my hair is a mess... My make-up needs a refresh... Ugh, I have food in my teeth... Damn, those onions were delish in my salad, but my breath, UGHHH... My lips are chapped... My hands are in serious need of moisture..."
So why slip up when it comes to our nails? That moment is bound to come around when we can least afford it, "OMG... my nail polish has chipped, and I don't have an extra minute to waste"  

With work, school, interviews, motherhood, cooking, laundry, cleaning, gym, da-ta-da-da-da, the list goes on... even if you're on your way to get your mani-pedi... there's no reason that you have to be caught out there! Along with your brush, floss, lip balm mints, and lotion, you absolutely MUST pick up a pack of nail polish remover pads. Throw them in your cosmetic bag, or have one stashed in each purse, but please... 
Never leave home without 'em! Unless you're carrying your nail polish for touch-ups or a quick fix, a clean bare nail is always better than a tacky chipped nail! 

But that's just my opinion... Lol!

I say a lady should always be classy and stay polished...
But please remember this...
Do it with Style, and Seal it with a Kiss!

Happy New Year to all!!

Wishing you all the best this coming year!
 It's time for a "Shift"!! Let's move into gear, and 
make it happen y'all! 

Focus, Success, and nothing less than the best!
...Do it with Style, and Seal it with a Kiss!

December 19, 2012

So excited... this year I made a wreath!!!

Yay!!! So I was inspired to make a wreath from scratch this year... something I've never done before. A little overwhelmed by all of the leftover branches that were cut from my Christmas tree, and absolutely no clue where to start, it took me about two weeks to begin this project. Thank God it only took me about two hours to complete it! 

I used two wire hangers and formed them into circles... this was the base. Since I waited two weeks to begin this project, I had some pretty dry branches sitting in the living room, so we started out by moistening the branches. After allowing them to sit in a bucket of water for a few minutes, I took them out one-by-one, and began to wrap (weave) them around the hangers and each other. Since I didn't have any floral wires, I used twist ties from the storage baggies. I used them to connect the branches, as needed. I added a few decorations once that was done... and VOILA! My homemade wreath!

Try it yourself! It was simple, and didn't take long at all!
...Do it with Style, and Seal it with a Kiss!

December 17, 2012

In Our Prayers...

I would like to take a moment to send my deepest condolences and prayers to all of the families who suffered a loss at the Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre in Connecticut! I also wanted to share this t-shirt that I came across (on Facebook)... the irony is saddening! As a mother, it pains me to know that such violence is alive, and there's often times nothing that we can do about it! If the schools don't want to incorporate God in prayer, then you have to be sure to send Him with your children... give them His covering. This tragedy could have hit anywhere, but when it hits sooo close to home it definitely brings a new perspective. I know this vicious event is arousing conversations of absolutely necessary gun law changes, but it goes so much deeper than that! A sick individual slaughtered 28 people (an entire class of 6 and 7 yr. old first graders - 20 children and 8 adults including himself)  for no logical reason. Gun laws would not have healed him! We need to get back to basics...

1. Know your children... the signs of this young man needing help or attention were there way before this incident! As parents and guardians, we can not ignore or overlook these signs... they are merely a small part of the bigger picture, and in this case, that lead to extreme tragedy! Mothers, use your intuition, and listen to what others may be saying. This does not mean that you have to believe everything that you hear, but be AWARE! Fathers, be present! ...In the conversation, in the moment, in the picture! Don't be such a disciplinarian that your children don't want to (or know how to) speak to you!

2. Love your children... Invite and Ignite LOVE!! Let them know that they are loved! Be active in their lives, override their negativity and rebelliousness with love. Converse with them and spend time with them! Understand and relate to the way your child gives and receives love. Parents, educators, and anyone dealing with children should pick up the book, The 5 Love Languages of Children, by Dr. Gary Chapman and Dr. Ross Campbell. Own it, read it, and apply it! Be the best friend that your children can confide in!

3. Instill in them the fear of God! If you expect your children to love, respect, honor, and obey you, they first must know what true love is... what true sacrifice is, and the gift of love that God gave the world...      

No one said that parenting is easy! Unfortunately, we can not protect our children every step of the way. All we can do is our best... but there are no copouts in parenting... no excuses... we can't let the ball drop so often that we don't even know what game is being played anymore! We have to be involved, we have to be committed, we have to genuinely care, and always continue to pray!

Once again, my heart and prayers go out to the parents and families of those lost, and to the nation of those touched as a result of this violence! We can only hope that gun laws will be put in place to make the process of obtaining these type of assault weapons nearly impossible, especially for mentally ill or 'mentally bruised' individuals. However, we have the power to make changes in our children, families, and future! We are obligated to impart this change. Be the parents that our children need us to be... that this nation needs us to be... and don't stop in your own home... Spread the Love! -Please remember this... Do it with Style, and Seal it with a Kiss!

"I believe the children are our future. Teach them well, and let them lead the way. Show them all the beauty they possess inside. Give them a sense of pride to make it easier..." -Whitney Houston