Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Random Acts of Kindness

Hey there loves!  It’s Queen She known as me here again, hoping everything has been and is well with you. Lately I’ve become a bit of a people watcher.  Sitting in the lobby of an office of which I had an appointment, I noticed a lot of people. Some seemed to be confident, some seemed preoccupied with what was at hand, I witnessed people having outburst of anger, I witnessed people being b ** holes, then I’ve noticed people who just seem to be sad, and I wondered; would a kind gesture change that person’s demeanor.  

Today I want to talk about kindness.  I read a quote from author Steve Maraboli that says “a kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal.”   I’ve shown kindness before; I’ve smiled, used words of encouragement to try and lift a heavy heart, let the person in the grocery store line behind me that has 2 items jump ahead, small things; but the one thing that’s better than being kind is being on the receiving end when it’s needed but unexpected.  It reassures me that God is always near, as He promised, and that He has deposited affection, warmth, gentleness, concern and care in the hearts of many who are ready and willing to be obedient.  It also provokes selflessness in me, and prompts me to look for opportunities to be kind, and it be unexpected to someone as it was to me.  It’s a great feeling.  

I thought I would put together a small list of random acts of kindness.  Try one, try some, and see if you don’t feel good about yourself. And remember, what you release into the atmosphere, ALWAYS comes back.  It’s up to you how it comes back.  Make the decision to be expectant of something good to come back your way because that’s what you put out there….good.

1. Share overheard compliments
2. Walk in a restaurant, and search for a person who’s meal you’ll pay for
3. Give compliments
4. Smile
5. Offer assistance
6. Donate
7. Volunteer
8. Say thank you
9. Show compassion
10. Show concern

Monday, January 8, 2018

Five New Favs

Hey guys, Queen She known as me here, and The Diva is journaling!  How’s everybody doing this second week of the new year?  I’m cold as heck, as I’m sure most people around, across and about the country are as well; but, I’ve come across a couple of shiny new five-star toys that warm my demeanor very quickly.  Walk with me, and I’ll share.

1. Coconut Activated Charcoal Powder.  I found this on Amazon.  I was looking for something to jumpstart a cleanse prior to me becoming a pescatarian this year (yup I am, but another blog post I promise…soon).  Any who, not only does this product absorbs toxins and toxic residues in the body, but it whitens teeth,  makes a superb addition to facial cleansers and masks, and absorbs odor.

2. Blanket Scarf.  Ooh baby! My secret Santa hooked me up with the most beautiful blanket scarf by Ann Taylor.  I absolutely love scarves; in my closet they have their own space, and every winter you will find me connected ever so close with one.  With this one, I’ve already mastered 5 ways to style it and keep warm.  [Spoiler Alert!!!!! another future blog post!]

3. Hempz Herbal Body Moisturizer. I guess I can chalk it up to old age, but my skin needs more moisturizing these days.  Hempz is enriched with 100% pure natural hemp seed oil, it’s paraben free, gluten free, 100% vegan, yada yada, yada you get the picture; now don’t get me wrong, all of these are great benefits to a good moisturizer, but  I simply love it because it goes on light, but it moisturizes like a heavy lotion. That’s it. Marshalls, and  Ulta have it for $10.99-$12.99, and sometimes at Ulta, it’s buy 1 get 1 50% off.  Now Walgreens, my favorite store, has it for $22.00…..BOOOO Walgreens, you know better! LOL.  It’s good but not that damn good.  Amazon has a great collection too with reasonable prices.

4. Uni-ball Signo. This smooth writing gel pen  is all that.  In order for my writing to be legible… I have to use a fine point pen… I know special kind of person.  The ink is in Prussian Blue, and my pages look like I have the best penmanship ever…LOL.  I don’t, but you can’t tell it.

5. Flairosol 10 oz White Sprayer. Yawl, I done changed the game in twist outs and wash & go’s! LOL.  I saw this on YouTube; the youtuber, Lexis Hair was doing her hair and I noticed the spray bottle had a continuous flow.  Off to Amazon I went, and found it for less than $5.  Now whatever I spray on the strands, like conditioner, or water goes on with an even coverage.  New level of hair styling!  

Thursday, January 4, 2018

What’s your driving force for 2018?

Happy New Year! I hope it found you doing well, and like me, amped about becoming better.  Every year around this time I get uber excited about climbing to another year viewing different horizons; sometimes I get there, sometimes I get close, and sometimes I miss the mark completely.  Change can be hard, especially when we jump in with both feet, and the momentum dries up quicker that acetone nail polish remover when the air hits it. I understand; this is one of the worst feeling ever.   I’ve compiled a personal list of items that I deem detrimental to my success in 2018.  Sometime this year, maybe six months from now, I’ll share my list and we’ll see how I’m doing making the mark on eliminating them for my life.  I intend to go hard this year to tear down systems in my mind that have hindered me in the past, therefore creating a lifestyle change, and one I can definitely notice.

The thing is we can’t give up.  Nope we can’t.  We have to realize just like it took time to get where we are, it’ll take time to build momentum and its hard work to keep it going.  But again it’s doable.  Be realistic and start with small obtainable goals at first.  Challenge yourself but don’t overdo it.  Once you begin to set small realistic obtainable goals, and you accomplish what you’ve set out to do, you start experiencing success, and that helps build confidence and momentum.  Change one behavior at a time, don’t overwhelm yourself.

Aim for lifestyle changes instead of resolutions.  I hate those. New Year resolutions are almost always guaranteed to fail.  According to Medical Daily  it’s been estimated that only eight percent (8%!) of people who make a New Years’ Resolution actually succeed.  The article reads:[1]  “The annual tradition of breaking a New Year’s resolution is observed perhaps just as strictly, if regretfully, as that of making one. Research into motivation, for instance, knows that for a task to be accomplished, the actor must genuinely want to complete it — wanting it to be completed isn’t enough.”  Hmm, sounds like me after my 1st week of exercise. 

A lifestyle change on the other hand is a process.  It comes from strong motivation, getting inspired, getting, being, and staying prepared, and getting excited to get there.  You have to make it a process, and you have to do it daily.  You have to work towards what you’re wanting to change.  If you’re making small strides toward change; you’d be surprised how quickly they can add up to major lifestyle changes.  For example, if you want to become vegetarian, eat 3 vegetarian meals for one week, see how that goes.  If you’re still motivated, add a day every week for the next 4 weeks.  Then look back at your success; that’s four weeks, all 7 days totaling 28 days, you’ve eaten vegetarian.  It takes only 21 days to form a new habit!

Read, study and look for free resources to help you achieve your goals and to maintain them.  The internet is a beast, but it also is a wonderful cyber world where you can find information on anything.  Use it, wisely.  Stay prepared.  Unpreparedness is like being a soldier in war and having no equipment or weapons to fight the battle.  Whether it’s through prayer, research, meditation, using a planner, or  whatever you fancy, just get prepared and stay prepared.

Lastly, have fun with yourself, wherever you are in your walk.  Just have fun and enjoy yourself.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

What Are You Reading?

It’s December, and in most places around the country, it’s cold outside, so why not get comfortable, light some candles; if you like background noise while you read, play some soft music.  But if you’re like me, all you want is to be able to concentrate on the novel or whatever you’re reading in a quiet place.  Whatever your preference create the perfect reading ambience. 

I’m reading Gabrielle Union’s  We’re Going to Need More Wine: Stories That Are Funny, Complicated, and True.  Fortunately for me she created the ambience for me, because I’m lost in these pages. By the time I look up from 50 pages, the candle I lit earlier is about to burn out.  It’s just that good.

Gabrielle Union gets real about everything in her book from being called the “N” word at a young age, to losing her virginity.    If you haven’t purchased this book, or rented it from the library do so, and in the words of Tami Roman “Get Into It!”

So that’s what I’m reading, tell me what you’re reading.  Let me know how you like to read, and what’s your atmosphere like when your words come to life from the pages.

 Photo from The Reading Agency

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Minimalist in the Making.

Do this for me if you will.  Imagine a world within your home that is 100% decluttered.  

I’ll wait, because I’m sure for some, like me that sentence causes one to ponder, cogitate on, chew on, dwell on and even dream on.  A house that is 100% tidy and not overcrowded with unnecessary items is doable beyond measure.  How do I know?  I’ve just completed the #minsgame, and I let go of 460+/- items from my home within one month.  I’d like to share my journey with you. 

What is it to be a minimalist?  For the past five years I’ve been looking for a type of freedom; to be able to live with fewer material possessions, to not be bound to material things.  Six years ago a friend of mine had a blog.  He started writing about a world that would change and force every citizen into a space of unfamiliarity, a hostile takeover where people would have to learn to live off of nothing.   He asked me and several others to write a piece for the ongoing saga, and I did.  Mine was about minimalism; in fact my piece was called the Minimalist.  I’d never read or wrote anything on minimalism, but the words flowed like liquid and the story was amazing.  It was one of those “I wrote this?” moments.  I was impressed with what poured from me through writing, and it caused me to look deeper at what I’d written to see if I could live like that now without the fiction part making me live that way.  After tampering with my writers mind, a fiction became a fantasy which became a reality.

Am I the minimalist that doesn’t own a car, am I the nomad who has no permanent home?  Nope. But let me tell you what I was, so you can understand the type of minimalist I am.  I was the compulsive person who would buy on a whim, not giving careful thought or planning.  I had irresistible, compulsive desires to have things I’d never owned before.  Not necessarily huge things, it could be something as small as a kitchen gadget, or something as large as a new car. I’d figure out a way to get it.  Where did that leave me?  Broke, afraid, feeling helpless, guilty and ashamed when I couldn’t meet the rent obligation.

Please don’t misunderstand me, there’s nothing wrong with the person who owns material possessions.  However for me, I was giving a different meaning to the things I owned, and because of the turmoil it caused me I was forsaking the things that really brought me peace; my creative passions like writing, reading, learning, sewing, cooking, scrapbooking.  Being a minimalist helps me make more conscious decisions about what I choose to do with my money; it frees me to use my time wisely, it gives me the freedom to choose what surrounds me.  I live in the moment more.  I can pursue my passions. I can focus on me as an entire creative being.  I see more of me daily, as I am now focused on experiencing real freedom to grow into the woman with purpose and power versus the woman bound with limitations.

In my daily life, if I purchase a piece of clothing, once I am home before it goes in my closet a piece comes out and is donated.  I do not purchase anything, until what I have is gone. I am a huge recycler; everything goes to the recycling center to possibly be re-purposed.  

After my participation in the #minsgame, including my daughter and granddaughter’s things, there are 33 pieces of furniture currently in my home.  I’m positive within the next year, it will be tremendously less; got something new coming down the pike in 2018. I’m conscience about the 33 pieces because when it’s time to make a move, it should be quick and efficient.

I’ve started a new minimalism challenge for the month of December, called #monthofminimal.  It’s a 30-day checklist.  Looks like fun, however I will say if you’re an experienced minimalist, you’ve more than likely done all 30 of the tasks!  It is a great introduction to minimalism though; for me a minimalist in the making, I’m going to do it anyway.  Can’t hurt.  Mins away!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Hair Buzz

Everybody’s buzzin about Sanaa Lathan's beautifully shaven head/ big chop in preparation for her role in the upcoming Netflix adaption of Nappily Ever After.  Isn’t she gorgeous! 

courtesy of Google

Ladies we are not our hair.  So many times we get obsessed over hair styles and how to do them to make them look like the YouTube clips, or we become hair product junkies and we have more hair products on the shelves than we do grocery in the pantry.  It’s not that serious, IT’S REALLY NOT THAT SERIOUS.   

I’ve gotten questions from people about what products I use, how do I get my hair to do this or that. Now I’ve watched my share of YouTube videos, and I love em!  However at the end of the day my mission is and has always been, get the most, for the cheapest. Get the most benefits for my mane without breaking my pocket.  I did the big chop two years ago.  I’ve never been a product junkie, I’m somewhat of a minimalist in my hair care products, and I concentrate more on the daily hair care routine; in doing so I have come to find five products that work together well and that I use:  

· Shea Moisture’s Raw Shea & Capuacu Frizz Defense Shampoo and Conditioner,
· Kinky-Curly Knot Today Leave in Conditioner,
· Shea Moisture 100% pure Jamaican Black Castor Oil, 
· Eco Styler Black Castor & Flaxseed Oil Styling Gel, 
· Shea Moisture Coconut & Hibiscus Frizz-Free Curl Mousse

That’s it.  These are the only products you’ll find in my cabinets, my stash.  These products for me moisturize, fight frizz, and structure my curl pattern.  What I’ve found as with anything, we have to be consistent in the routine, get to know your hair, become real acquainted with your strands.  For instance, when the seasons change, get a different moisturizer (use up the one you have first! LOL) and the results will be fab.  Be Happy Nappily!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Gone Conspiracy Theory Wild

Hi Huns!  We’ve all heard of conspiracy theories and wondered whether or not there was any truth to them eh?  I can’t be the only one who reads this stuff... Can I?  Any who, jump on the bandwagon and read some of these; some are funny, some are downright ridiculous, and some will make you go hmm. 

First of all what is a conspiracy theory?  A conspiracy theory is a belief that some covert but influential organization is responsible for a circumstance or event, and explanation of an event or situation that invokes a conspiracy without warrant.  So why am I writing about these?  Because my loves sometimes I catch myself staring at the ceiling at night time and counting sheep doesn’t do it for me as quick as it does for my two year old granddaughter who’s snoring happily in the next room.  So yes, these help me tumble off the deep end into a pool of sleep until my weak bladder wakes me and shuffles me down the hall to the restroom.  Okay that’s an over share, however here are a couple of interesting conspiracy theories I’ve read about.

The New Coke.  I’m always reading about food and drinks, always, and this one was very interesting to me. The New Coke was manufactured between 1985 and 2002 remember?  A theory claims that the Coca-Cola Company deliberately changed the formula to an inferior formula with New Coke with the intentions of either driving up demand for the original Coke product or permitting the reintroduction of the original Coke with a new formula using cheaper ingredients.  Supposedly this new formula was preferred in taste tests of nearly 200,000 consumers. The then President of Coca-Cola Donald Keough rebutted this charge saying “The truth is, we’re not that dumb, and we’re not that smart.”   Hmmm.  Well Coca-Cola , the New Coke tasted a lot like the classic Coca-Cola that had been diluted with water, lots of water.  I missed having that noisily release of air from my stomach (burping really loud) after just three, maybe four swigs of the soft drink.  Oh and the burning in my nostrils after the belching, well that’s the southern way!  I was elated to have the original back, so are you sure this wasn’t your plan all along?  Come a little closer…..(whispering)  it worked if it was.  I purchased cases after the classic was reintroduced.  However it still didn’t quite have it’s original “make me burp loud and burn my nostrils” taste.  Hmm.

Paul McCartney is dead.  Yep, how many of us have heard this urban legend?  It says  that Paul McCartney died in a car accident in 1966.  He was supposedly replaced with a look-alike and a sound alike.  The only evidence supporting McCartney’s death are clues found in the Beatles recordings..  People have stated when a song is played backwards, they can hear concealed  lyrics like “Paul is dead, miss him, miss him” and on the cover of the album Abbey Road, because McCartney is the only Beatle barefooted and out of step with the others it is presumed it is not him. Hmm.  I think he’s still here amongst us, but…….

The next time I’m restless and can’t sleep or bored, I’m reading up on the one that’s says the Queen of EVERYTHING, Queen Bey, Ms. Sasha Fierce (Beyoncé Knowles-Carter) is a clone.  Yep, that’s what I’m gonna read.

If you have any theories you’d like to put out here, let er rip Tater Chip!  And share with us.  We’d enjoy a good read.