Saturday, October 30, 2010

Frugal Extravagance

I started thrifting about a year ago when I just happened to be walking in the neighborhood of my job. I passed by a store that always had things on the sidewalk that I thought would look perfect in my dream house. Very vintage chairs and sets of plates that were just very unique and cute. I happened to go in one day simply to look at the furniture but was quickly intrigued by the clothes and accessories too.

This past weekend I did some research on thrift stores in my area since I cant frequent that other place for often anymore. I found Beacon’s Closet and at the same time I found heaven on earth, just at a cheaper price.

I found this jacket on a rack that I wasn't even supposed to touch. But it was an obvious choice. That day I walked out of the house with a leopard blouse and a cropped faux fur vest. Put those together and you have this jacket. I had to purchase it. Plus it was Free People for only $35 which is usually upwards of $200!

I tried these leopard platform shoes on by Carlos Santana. They were really cute and obviously I was having a moment with animal print. Ultimately, I had to say enough and decided against them. I also had a pair of Steve Madden black and red patent pumps for $10 (on the left).

I left the store with two items. The jacket and these pebble leather Calvin Klein pumps for $20 were one. They looked like the were wore once. I decided to go with something that is unlike anything I have in my closet and these will be great when the weather warms up.

Hair I Am

I started to love my iPhone 4 (a surprise if you’ve read my previous post). And because of it, I am taking more pictures. Almost daily I pose for myself to capture my beauty and of course my hairstyle. LOL. Pictures below.

This was a casual Monday. Started my week with a bigger twist-out than I'm used to.

You can't really see the hair, but the outfit was nice. Coral, black and silver. This was one way that I incorporated my Srping/Summer items into this frigid Fall.

Back to the hair. I retwisted my hair every night and finger combed it in the mornings. Nice.

I'm like an angel with the halo casted over my head. I have a center part to spice it up.

Pinned the sides and fluffed the front and back.

I obviously took out my twist out and didn't bother to finger comb. The sections are still visible which gives me the Sideshow Bob look (my uncle gave me that name).

This was the day of the Transcendence Natural Hair Show in Brooklyn. I was trying too hard and ended up with this. I didnt let my hair dry and later on that day my hair shrunk.

Harlem Knights

Yesterday officially made 4-weeks at my new job. I started working at the Harlem Children’s Zone as a Middle School Tutor. It’s definitely a shock coming from the Talented &Gifted school I’ve worked at for the last 4 years. I’ve become accustomed to students who were self sufficient and intelligent beyond their years. Now I’ve been put into a place that makes me believe the movie Precious still resounds in our modern days.

I have one student who can’t read or write, other students who can almost read, and then there are those who can read the words but have now idea what the words mean. My first thoughts were how I can make a quick but professional exit. I didn’t and still don’t believe I can make any change. Geoffrey Canada, the founder of Harlem Children’s Zone, has had his name broadcasted throughout the country as his program is supposed to make huge leaps in education amongst low income children. How can I live up to that?

Whatever my fate is at this new place, I can’t help but be upset with the fact that the level of education will not increase anytime soon amongst low income neighborhoods which so happen to house mostly Black people. I’ve been lucky enough to live within the status of the Middle Class. But what about the poverty stricken. What about their education? Not granting them an equal chance means that the cycle will only continue.

So I hope we aren’t surprised in a couple of years when there’s an inflation of Black boys in prison, Black mothers of only 15 years old, a decrease in graduation rates, an increase in government assistance and a slew of elderly people who have no support.

Anyway, wish me and my new children luck. I will try my hardest to make the change that Geoffrey Canada has established. I just might go bald and sleep deprived while doing it.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Step Aside Ms. Berry

Kerry Washington is the new Halle. Yeah, I said it. I haven't even though about it until today and I say it because I got my new Essence Magazine. She adorns the cover. Her face is plastered in more places recently and not just because she's easy on the eyes but because she's talented, personable, and involved in the issues of today.

My very first Kerry moment was a couples of years ago when I saw Lift. At the time she was one of the rare Black actresses that I thought was still beautiful even though she had short hair, chubby, high cheek bones and huge lips. It sounds like I'm describing myself and maybe that's why I fell in love with her. Recently, I saw a movie that wasn't really publicized, Life is Hot in Cracktown, where she played a transgender, crack addict. Next I plan to see Colored Girls. Because she's in it along with many other black Beauties.

You guys thought Halle did it in Monster's Ball. Hmmph, no sir. Check out Ms. Kerry, baby!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Buddha's My Buddy

“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the [only] one who gets burned.”

I get these quotes from my job. They are posted for two weeks in a place that is visible once you walk in the door so you’re kind of forced to contemplate the meaning and how it may correlate with a situation your life.

This one applies so strongly in the sense that people are so often angry with someone else but rarely expressing their anger appropriately. I don’t need to tell my story. I just wanted you to think about it.

Book Review: Invisible Life

E. Lynn Harris was an openly gay, African American author who died last year. While alive, he hit the New York Times Bestseller list 10 consecutive times! Most of novels illustrated the lives of Black men who were struggling with their sexuality, as I assume he was in his early life.

In my book group, we read Invisible Life, E. Lynn Harris’ first novel which he initially sold out of the trunk of his car before finding a publisher. The story surrounds law school student Raymond Tyler, who has a long term girlfriend yet finds himself suddenly aroused by fellow student, Kelvin. It seems like I’m giving too much of the story but the story is truly about Raymond’s struggle in allowing himself to accept his sexuality and cope with the judgment of his coworkers, community, and most importantly, family.

Reading this novel I often questioned whether or not society should put a definition to sexuality. The question of “Gay?” “Straight?” or “Bisexual?” usually haunts someone who simply enjoys the pleasure of anything other than society’s classification of “normal.” I became more understanding of this after hearing Raymond’s account.

On the other hand, I did not enjoy how the story was told. The story was told the way a person in this situation would feel under pressure but they also wanted a happily ever after ending. The setting of this account was in New York City during the 1990s. Where was the derogatory slurs and violence that was directed towards homosexuals during this time? We all know it existed and this tale did not include any of it which made this book very whimsical in comparison to the situation, time, and place.

Eventually, I plan to read all thirteen of Harris’ novels. I have actually already read Just As I Am and Any Way The Wind Blows but was recently advised that it’s best to read his books in order.

Happy Reading!

No Wedding, No Womb

I was suppose to write this post about a month ago after a receiving an email from DMB. The email was a link from another blogger’s page urging fellow bloggers to touch on the subject of refraining from having children out of wedlock. When checking this email I immediately wanted to participate in the movement because I strongly believe in it. I was recently having a conversation about it and agreeing that this is the route I wish to take in the future rather than being apart of a statistic of unwed mothers, single or not.

For my own reasons, I refuse to have a child without having a supportive husband. I have no sob story to tell that supports my decision and I’m far from being a feminist with strong, obnoxious views. I have just seen too many young girls, which could have easily been me, have babies with vanishing baby fathers.

This subject of single, young mothers does not have any prejudices against any race. However, I am certain that my race leads by far. I believe it’s from a history that is so embedded in Black women that it is too late to expunge now. But, I do believe that the education of the No Wedding, No Womb movement can help women everywhere stop the epidemic in its tracks.

For more information visit:

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Ain't No Stopping Me Now

“When one door closes another door opens; but we so often look so long and so regretfully upon the closed door, that we don’t see the ones which open for us.”
-Alexander Graham Bell

We’ve all heard this quote many times before. Well, at least the first part. The second part rarely gets acknowledged. However, it’s this section that truly applies to the feelings and actions we have when the first section occurs.

I’m dealing with this very issue now on so many levels. Career wise, I’ve been working at a place for a couple of years and I’m more than ready to move on. Like most people, I complain and mope, but recently an opportunity has come for me to move on. With all the complaining I do, one would expect me to jump at it and never look back. But I’ve built my routine around this first place. I’ve come accustomed to working with these people who I spend most of my day with. On the other hand, if I don’t leave now I may as well set up living quarters at my workplace and live there forever. What is holding me back? The comfort of the known.

The same notion goes for those who won’t let go of the toxic people in their lives. If you know such a person will not add any positive energy to your well-being, but you can’t let go of them, it’s just your insecurity playing with your emotions. Unreliable boyfriends, dramatic friends, and family members who suck you dry just because their “family” all fit the criteria of who should be either cut off entirely or held at a distance. This is starting to sound like I’m going off on a tangent but it all relates. We hold on to people, things, relationship and jobs for so long thinking we may regret letting go.