Keeping It Sew Simple 

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So I’ve finally decided to challenge myself and start something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time and that’s learn how to sew. I’ve accumulated a pretty fantastic fabric stash since 2012, along with a sewing machine and a serger. I’m not ready to just give up without allowing myself to have some fun.  As much as I love social media, I’m really interested in acquiring new hobbies that take me offline. I’ve taken a couple of classes at Joann Fabrics but nothing beyond that. I’m tackling a super easy dress from Simplicity and I plan to take my time. I’ve picked a fabric I purchased from Hancock Fabrics a couple of years ago. 

  
Anyone that knows me, knows I love prints and I love dresses. This one has a cold shoulder which is so in right now. I typically like to throw on something quick and cute to run errands and this little dress will do the trick, paired with a cute little sandal. 

  
 I thought it might be overly ambitious to attempt to make something for Mother’s Day. I’m giving myself a week to finish this dress. And then we’ll go from there.  What new hobbies are you interested in exploring? Leave a comment and let me know. Until next time, Ciao Bellas! 

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Weekend Recap

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Saturday was a super busy day for me.  After I got my eyebrows done, I proceeded to the Farmington Community Library to complete a project for a client. As I was entering the library, a young man asked if I wanted to learn more about Muslim history. I thought “why not?” There were several tables of interest. My first stop was to learn about hijabs. The assortment of hijabs caught my eye. I proceeded to have my name written in Arabic. I ended my mini-tour with a snack while I listened to the presenter talk in-depth about Muslim history and the Civil War, which was very interesting. This was a nice little detour before heading back downstairs to begin working. I took several pictures to capture the event.
  
  
  
  

  
  

The Art of Lip Service

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Kacey Kristen

KaceyKal & Kristen Noel Crawley

 

When beauty columnist Kristen Noel Crawley couldn’t find an all-natural lip mask, she decided to create her own.  After many trial and errors, she perfected the product that would deliver a kissable pout.  Her lip masks are natural and infused with collagen.  They work to smooth and plump flaky lips. I wear a lot of liquid lipsticks which tend to be drying so these are a welcome addition to my skin care regimen.  Fans of the pretty pink masks include Academy Award-winning actress Emma Thomas, celebrity makeup artists and Kim Kardashian West, “I love to use KNC lip masks before an event for my makeup prep. They keep my lips super soft and moisturized. Plus they’re so fun to use!” 

Crawley recently partnered with a young up-and-coming artist, KaceyKal.  He designed the packaging for the lip masks.  This collaboration came about after they connected on Instagram.  They recently launched the lip mask/pouch combo earlier this week.  We’re moving into the Summer months and these lip masks are sure to keep your lips soft and pucker-ready.  The lip masks come in packs of 5 for $24.99 and 10 for $39.99.  Go to kncbeauty.com and order yours today as the combo is available for a limited amount of time.  Ciao, Bellas!

 

 

The Naked Truth

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I found this YouTube video of  Tarriona “Tank” Ball, the singer from New Orleans-based group “Tank and The Bangas,” and it was beautiful.  It was raw.  It was inspiring.  It was brave. Despite her huge personality, It seemed that as she peeled off another layer of clothing, she became more in touch with her inner truth and revealed how she really felt being a big girl.  In this image conscious society, we dress to impress and our clothes can convey all kinds of messages to the receiver.  They cover our bodies like armor.  They serve as protection or shelter, from past traumas, if you will.  Sometimes we can get so caught up in the clothes, that we forget what and who is wearing those clothes.  Who are we really behind that fashionable façade?

As someone who is fashion and fitness conscious, her video challenged me to look inside myself and at myself minus the clothes.  Yes, having a fit body that meets my standards is important but what’s inside is just as important to understand who I am and what truths are lurking inside that need to considered.  We grow.  We evolve. We stretch. Sometimes baring the naked truth enables us to do this. Have you done this? Looked at yourself minus the clothes, the hair, the makeup, etc. and wondered who you really were? Don’t get me wrong, I love all those things that make me feel girly and pretty but I also never want to lose touch of my essence, my naked truth. Take a moment and check out her video and tell me what you think.

Ciao for now Bellas!

Met Gala 2017’s Best Dressed

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Halle

Halle Berry. Hallelujah!

So, I know I’m a couple of days late after the event but between finishing up two projects for paying clients and work, I still wanted to weigh in on the costume party of the year with my best-dressed picks.  On May 1, New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art opened its doors for the Met Gala, the annual invitation-only fundraiser to benefit the museum’s Costume Institute, and a launch party for its spring exhibition.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art announced the new theme for its 2017 Costume Institute exhibition and Met Gala 2017: “Rei Kawakubo/Comme des Garçons.” Opening on May 4, the show will be the first monograph show at the museum to focus on a living designer since its Yves Saint Laurent exhibit in 1983.

While this annual event indulges the attendees’ wildest imaginations and creativity, here are my favorites. For the sake of time, I didn’t bother to pick the worst-dressed because they were, well you know, “meh!”

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Zoe Kravitz is simply gorgeous with her perfect pixie and pink gown.

La-La-Anthony

LaLa Anthony is classy and risqué at the same time.

 

Rihanna MET

Rihanna is in full bloom.

Tracee Ellis MET

Only Tracee Ellis Ross can pull off a look like this.

Cassie and Diddy

Cassie and Diddy.

 

The Met Gala 2017

Serena Williams, baby bump and fiancé Alexis Ohanian

 

Zendaya

Zendaya, having fun as usual!

I’m With Her!

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Yesterday, I proclaimed that May is the month of miracles and manifestations.  We’re in the second quarter of 2017 and if you’re on track to meet some personal goals, awesome.  If you’re not, then what are you waiting for?  Take a moment to reassess what those goals are. Are they written down somewhere?  If not, write them down.  One of my main goals is growing professionally, creating shelter for my spirit, traveling and shrinking weight-wise.  This Winter was brutal and I was doing a lot of eating on the run and of course I know better.  So, now that my work has stabilized, I can better plan my workouts and my meals. So you could say I’m taking control.  When I’m off kilter health-wise, everything is off kilter for me.

Speaking of control, guess who’s making a comeback after having a beautiful baby boy and splitting from her fine hubby? Janet Jackson. Ms. Jackson, if you’re nasty.  Check out her announcement below of her “State Of The World” tour.  I’m feeling inspired by her comeback and getting back to my old #fitandfabforlife self.  What about you?  Are you planning to go to the concert?  I’ve seen her in concert years ago and she puts on a phenomenal show.  I’m betting she’s about to get super tight and shed all those clothes she was wearing to cover up and possibly honor her husband’s wishes.  We’ll see.  It’ll be interesting to watch her as she moves into this next phase of her life as a 50-year old woman who doesn’t have to gave any “dambs!”

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It’s May!

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MayMay is the month of miracles and manifestations. Here we are in the fifth month of 2017. What are you hoping to come to pass in the following months? Is it written down? Are you speaking it on a daily basis? Can you see it? Can you feel it? Everything is possible. Anything is possible. Here’s to unlimited miracles!

Social media detox

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Art courtesy of Melia Hotel Bahamas

 
Blame it on the sunny beaches in Bahamas that left me wanting to travel even more, see the world, discover new artists, and read books again. My social media hiatus has been long overdue and six days in, I’ve managed to not check my accounts as much so I haven’t totally checked out but I did delete everything from phone forcing me to go through my browser. 

Besides taking more vacations this year – Vegas, D.C., a Beyoncé concert with my sister, and Jamaica, I’m endeavoring to become more mindful. Slowing down a bit has its rewards.  Learning how to balance my time on social media with real life demands is the goal. I love technology especially since this WordPress app allows me to blog from my phone but I don’t feel the need to capture every moment on my phone and post it. My selfies are at an all-time low right now but I’m working on myself – changing my underemployed status; finding work in my field; finding my niche and building my brand; learning how to have an impact; enjoying the challenge of writing for others and working on my next book; maintaining my health and fitness; purposely showing love to my family and friends; focusing and remembering how much God is really in control and His love continually keeps me; and discovering myself as I age fearfully and gratefully.  

I’m excited and have joyful expectations about this next chapter and I’m here for it. My friend said it best “sometimes you have to step back, to go forward!” Until next time, be well! 

It’s OK to say “NO!”

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Say-NoHappy Spring Bellas.  It’s April and it’s a rainy day here in Michigan but I’ll take the rain over snow which we had a couple of weeks ago.  I’m still fighting a cold and since getting caught in the rain is what got me sick in the first place, I’m sitting still for now and working on my day off for “Fran, Inc.”  I started a writing business earlier this month and in my zeal to get started, I took on a client that I “thought” I could handle along with everything else I had going on.  When we initially met, everything that this person required seemed possible but what seems good in theory is not always good in practice.

He needed a personal assistant, a cheerleader, an accountability partner and a social media specialist and I realized I can’t realistically do  everything he is required and tend to my own goals and dreams.  I heard what he needed and I was providing him with some pretty viable solutions.  The problem is that person wasn’t meant to be me because I needed the same things he needed plus daily foot rubs.  This experience helped me become very clear about what I wanted to do regarding my business.  I didn’t want to take long term clients that required more of me that I was willing to give and lose myself in the process.  So, a week later, I “quit” and the moment I did I felt better immediately.  I realized I wasn’t interested in managing someone else’s affairs.

I tend to become distracted at times with the noblest of requests and truth is, I can’t afford to get caught in the crossfires of someone else’s stuff.  It’s OK to be selfish and it’s OK to say “NO.”  It doesn’t mean you’re not strong.  In fact, your strength lies more in your ability to access the situation and if it’s going to be more taxing than you anticipated, let that “shet” go.  When I’ve said ‘NO,” people managed to survive without my help.  That’s not to say that I’m not a badass as far as my skills are concerned but I have nothing prove to anyone taking on more than I need to.  Time is precious and I’d rather do things that allow me to be at peace with myself and not at odds.  Being fit doesn’t mean just working out and eating right although those are important.  Being fit also means managing you and your stress and quickly reducing anything that will stress you unnecessarily.  My mother used to always say that “all money ain’t good money” and it’s true.  I was looking forward to that weekly “stipend” but I realized it wasn’t worth the headache.    It’s OK to say “NO” and it’s OK to change your mind.

Until next time, be good Bellas!

 

 

 

Dear Toni,

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toni_morrison140-dc25518d186d40d484101cd8a2db487825428dca-s6-c30Dear Toni,

It’s been 3 years since I wished you “Happy Birthday” via my blog.  The sentiment is still the same.  Honoring you as the woman, the writer, whose legacy of words shall enrich us all well beyond your birthday of birthdays.  Happy Birthday Toni!

With Love,  An inspired writer

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Check out my post from 2013. https://slimchick.wordpress.com/2013/02/19/happy-belated-birthday-toni-morrison/