Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Holidays!

I hope everyone has a fantastic holiday season! Spend quality time with loved ones and take time out for yourself as well. Give something back to the community...and never forget how blessed you are! Peace and love to all. End this year the right way and start the next one on a great note!
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Monday, December 14, 2009

Classy natural

Even with my baby locs in the VERY awkward stage, I managed to look presentable! Lol. Don't be discouraged by frizzy hair...experiment with different styles and techniques until you figure out what's best for your hair and your lifestyle.
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Thursday, November 19, 2009

I'm a style icon!

So head on over to BGLH and check me out :)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Style tutorial

The style I like to wear is a combination twist out and bantu knot out. I actually experimented with the style before I started my locs and I loved how it came out so I tried it with my locs and it pretty much came out the same way. Here are the steps:

Start with freshly washed or damp hair.

Moisturize and apply any product that you use on your hair. I used coconut oil and glycerin.

Two strand twist hair all over. For locs, take two locs and twist them together.

Take 2 two strand twists and twist them together. Now you have a four strand twist.

Take that four strand twist and twist it until it coils on to itself, creating a bantu knot.

Repeat the process all over your head.

Now bantu knots are a style on their own, so I kept mine in for about 3 days.

Make sure your hair is completely dry before taking it loose. I recommend sitting under a dryer or letting it air dry.

Carefully undo each bantu knot and untwist each twist.

To get rid of the spaces caused by the parts rub your hands through your hair. I put a nickel sized amount of moisturizer on my hands before I did this.

*The good thing about this style is that, for me at least, it lasts longer than a twist out or bantu knot out because it produces a tighter curl. I do this process during the weekend, wear the bantu knots for a few days, then wear it loose the rest of the week.

Hope you try this style!
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Monday, November 9, 2009

My morning thoughts

I'm on the train right now, standing up. It isn't ridiculously crowded, but I really don't want to sit with a stranger. I'm not in a particularly great mood. This guy spoke to me this morning; i just knew he was about to segway into some pick up lines. When I responded to him I'm sure my voice reeked of my bad attitude. That makes me think of my math teacher. One day we were walking past one another and as she walked by she looked at me and said "Smile, why don't you?" or some shit like that. I wasn't against smiling, but as I go throughout my day I don't just walk around with a big ass smile on my face all day. In addition to that, am I not entitled to be in a bad mood sometimes? Damn. Everything is not peachy in my life, and I know it could be worse, but just because that's the case doesn't mean that I'm not at all worried or troubled. Another thing, I have said this many times before, but it continues to happen so it still gets on my nerves: I hate when people stare at me! It is rude as hell. I guess I'm just venting. I don't feel too great and Marta damn sure is not improving my mood or my health. Well maybe my health a little, since I walk more now (I don't have a choice). But that's not the point lol. The point is that I am not pleased with the day so far, and it just started. Maybe later I will feel better.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Multimedia message

I took a few camera phone pics after my shoot cause I was really feelin my look... My alias is Dreadlocked Pinup, and I think that's what I look like, even though my baby locs are too small to see. Whatever the case, the shoot was ridiculously great! Here are my camera phone pics:

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

More photos by Tamara Madden

I LOVE THEM I LOVE THEM I LOVE THEM!!! OK, I will try to calm down. I LOVE THEM! Tamara has skills, do you hear me???! This shoot came just in time. I was feeling a certain kinda way about my body, but this is a reminder that even though I am not at my ideal weight, I am still beautiful and my weight should not stop me from modeling. Thanks Tamara! It was a pleasure working with such a talented artist! Check me out in the Garden...Pangeas Garden Project

Sunday, November 1, 2009

The beginning...

I got my locs started today! I love it already... It looks really good. I love that he used all natural stuff so my hair doesn't feel stiff. I am so excited... And Meghan is more excited than I am lol. Of course I will keep you guys updated on this journey. I have to do a video because the experience was great. I went to Bornu Locs in a secret location lol. You can check out his work at He was really cool and he finished my hair in less than 2 hours.
I guess that's it for now. Stay tuned :)
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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Cheap AND Healthy is not a fantasy...

I always say that it costs more to have less things in your food. Organic stuff is more expensive than highly processed foods. That's pretty sad. Our society wants us to be healthy and thin and beautiful, but they want us to be all of that on a diet of Krispy Kreme and McDonalds (don't forget to wash it all down with an extra large Coke!).

I know we're in a recession, and I know organic stuff is pricey, but that's not an excuse to eat unhealthily (is that even a word??? You know what I mean dammit lol) All I'm trying to say is that you can eat healthy and not break the bank.

I have an example of how I did that today, or I should say how I am doing it, since I am eating as I type this. I already told you guys about my random chicken craving. Well, we bought a whole chicken, already cut, cooked, seasoned and baked for $6. That same evening, we also bought a bag of coleslaw. Now I am not a big mayo fan so I tend to shy away from coleslaw. But this was the bag in the salad section, and all it is is cabbage and carrots shredded up. We got that for 79 cents. I took some of the coleslaw and put it in a plastic container, popped it in the microwave for about 2 minutes to steam it. So I have baked chicken with a side of cabbage for under $7. What's even better is that the chicken lasted for 3 days. So really it is possible to spend about 7 bucks and eat for 3 days. I think that's pretty affordable.

Another thing...make sure to see what sales your local grocery store has going on. And don't be discouraged if you can't do all of your shopping at one store. Meghan and I go to 3 stores: our neighborhood, hole in the wall store (Piggly Wiggly) Kroger, and Wal Mart. We go to Pig Wig for produce, because we know when they first bring it in and it's always priced just right. We go to Kroger for pretty much everything else. We only go to Wal Mart for toiletries, and we might get food items if their price is lower than Kroger's.

Another thing that helps save money is portion control. When I make dinner, I usually eat while keeping in mind that I want to have food left over to take to work the next day.

I'll end on this not: DON'T UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF H2O!!! I was starving earlier, but I wasn't in a place to eat so I just drank water. It really did help. I'm not saying it took my hunger away completely, but it took the edge off. Did you know that most people are chronically dehydrated, so they confuse thirst with hunger? I will devote anther post to water later.

Eat right, live right.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Eat More Chikn?

OMG. I have been on this protein kick lately. I've been randomly craving chicken and fish. Maybe my body is ready to follow my mind and make some changes. I need to make some changes. I have allowed myself to slip back into old habits and pick up a dew pounds. I do NOT like it. I refuse to put my health on hold, so I am starting today. It's not just about health though. I don't want to keep reminiscing on the body I used to have. I want to have an even better version of that body. It's not going to be easy. I need to lose at least 15 pounds, probably more like 20. But I'm ready and willing to do it, because I want to see results. Anyway, back to chicken. Meghan and I went to Kroger last night at 11pm cause I was craving chicken. I really wanted pulled chicken from this BBQ joint, but it was too late for that. We bought some baked chicken. As soon as we got settled into the car I started tearing into that chicken. I felt like a straight carnivore. I better enjoy it now cause I can't have chicken or any other meat next month.

Photos by Tamara Natalie Madden

I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THESE. I can't wait to see more of these lovely photos. Natural hair is versatile as hell. For this shoot, I four strand twisted my hair then bantu knotted the twists. It resulted in tight coils that I LOVE. I like how it looks, so I have been wearing my hair like this since the shoot. I think I will lock my hair using this method, because the coils look a lot like starter locks. Anyway, I don't have a bunch of pictures yet, so I will post more as I get them. Stay tuned!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Recap of shoot with Tamara Madden

The shoot was great! Tamara is multitalented: first and foremost, she is an artist and her paintings are amazing! She does photography as a means to inspire her art. She also does hair and makeup. All I had to do was show up and she took care of the rest! I will admit she is far from me and it was quite a drive, but my boo was very patient with me and drove out there with no complaints. I love my fee ants :)

Anyway, the shoot was funky. We shot outside and Tamara truly maximized nature's potential in the area we were in. It was a beautiful day and we took advantage of it.

Basically, today was pretty awesome. I can't wait to work with her again.
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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Tired of this jelly

Bootylicious just popped in my head.

:singing: I don't think you ready for this jelly...

I am tired of this jelly.

I am not pleased with my body. I miss my smaller waist and slimmer arms. I miss the definition I once had.

I had to admit that to myself. I have been going through this cycle of admitting that I want to lose weight, then reassuring myself that I'm ok.

The problem is that I'm not ok. I am overweight and I know it. I want to lose weight, but I'm not particularly motivated to stop being lazy. I put off exercising. I internally make excuses. I say I am going to do something, then I don't.

I said I was going to start getting up early in the morning and working out for 30 minutes, then walking for at least 30 minutes in the evening.

I need to get it together. I don't just want to lose weight... I want to be healthy.

Today I watched videos of people who lost a lot of weight, but in a healthy weight. Most of these people lost 50+ pounds! Now, I don't feel like I need to lose 50 pounds, but I'm pretty sure I could stand to lose 30. I don't know how much I weigh; honestly I don't want to know. I do know my measurements though, so I will track my progress that way.

I am ready. I am so ready. I am BEYOND ready. I'm tired of complaining about my weight. Time to do something about it. A lot of issues run in my family: high blood pressure, diabetes, heart attack... I certainly don't need to add to my risk.

Let the lifestyle change begin. I hope you come along for the ride.
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Friday, October 9, 2009

Coffee- part 1

This is old but I'm currently working on part two, so I decided to post part one.

You sit there, consumed in your thoughts. You always sit in that chair, the one closest to the window. It's like you want to be ready to escape at any moment. I always see you sitting there and I want to say something, but I never do. I’m scared that if I say something I’ll disrupt that perfect calm you’ve created and you'll fly out of that window.

Every day as I wait in line for my coffee I glance at you. I memorize the curve of your spine as you sit, hunched over whatever book you're reading, your hands pulling your hair back to keep your locs off of the precious pages.

I always keep a single black band around my wrist. Not for my hair, but for yours. I wonder why you never wear a headband; you just hold your hair back with your hands.

If I were you I wouldn't wear a headband either. I'd always want to feel that hair.

You are black. Your eyes and teeth are stars on a dark chocolate sky. I take a quick look at you, then let my eyes drop back down into my cup. I look deep into the dark liquid.

I’m trying to see if my coffee is the same color as you.

Each day before I walk out of the house I take one last look in my full length mirror and say:

"Today is the day." Today is the day when I'll say hello. Today is that day that I’ll offer you the rubber band around my wrist. Today is the day when I'll get close enough to you to see if you match my mocha cappuccino.

I walk into the coffee shop. There you are, right by the window, reclining in that same chair, eyes closed, locs spilling over your cheeks and down past your shoulders, headphones on, cassete player in hand, tapes spread all over your lap.

You are beautiful.

I look at my wrist, making sure the band is still there. It is. I walk up to the counter and order my usual. As I wait I twist the black band around my wrist. The cashier gives me my coffee and I turn to leave, head down, eyes drowning in my cup. I walk, trying to hurry and leave because I don't know what to say to you. I am mad at myself once again for not having the courage to speak. I’m almost at the door when

Everything is in slow motion. I hear tapes clatter onto the tile floor. I feel coffee spill on my coat. I see two pairs of brown hands, grabbing at tapes as they hit the floor. I hear voices, first emitting curses then frantically whispering apologies. I feel hands wiping my coat.

There is one more tape on the floor. I pick it up and place it in those brown hands. Then, I look up.

You look back at me. You open your mouth and words spill out like the coffee that stained my coat.

"I'mreallysorryforbumpingintoyou. I'm Siam by the way."

But I’m already out the door.

Part two comign soon.

Poetry: Carmex (oldie but goodie)

I'm kinda jealous of your Carmex

You want to know why?

Cause it's always in your pocket

Ready to be reapplied

Your lips are addicted to it

Always wanting more

As soon as you run out

You rush to the store

Cause you can't live without your Carmex

See, that's what I mean

I want your lips to be

That addicted to me

If I was Carmex

Would I stay on your lips

Make you smile

Provoke you to kiss

If I was Carmex

Would it be me your lips craved

Essentially making

Your mouth my slave

If I was Carmexv Would I have your lips hypnotized

Cause every time I glide over them

They're instantly moisturized

Well then call me Carmex

If that's what i must be

To have your lips

Covered in me

Thursday, October 8, 2009

My Hairstory

Going natural wasn't a big deal to me. I honestly just didn't want to perm my hair anymore. I didn't see the point; whenever I permed my hair it would eventually break off. I figured it couldn't get any worse, so I just stopped perming it. I didn't really know what to do with it. I didn't know any thing about transitioning. So I kept it in afro twists or braids.

One day I stood in the mirror and chopped my permed hair off. I didn't do that great of a job, so I went to a salon and let a stylist cut the permed hair off that I didn't quite get to. When I stopped perming my hair, I was in 10th or 11th grade. When I went to the salon, I was a senior. So I have been perm free for over 4 years.

Now, having natural hair means more to me than simply not having a perm. It's about embracing my wonderful nappy hair. Most of the time that i've been natural I spent wearing twists and braids with weave for the most part. I hadn't worn my fro out for more than a week at a time. Recently, I have been wearing my hair out. I have good and bad days, but I love my hair, and it's hard for me to keep my hands out of it. It's soft, thick, and unique.

The next step in my hair journey is to GET LOCKED UP! I'm so excited about locking my hair. And of course I will be documenting my journey. I hope you decide to follow me!

Hair isn't the only thing I write about... I am primarily a poet. So check out my blog! You never know what you may find...
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I think they do it 3 or 4 times a week...

I'm talking about cutting the grass. I think the grass here at Agnes Scott is cut like every other day. It's fucking ridiculous. Soooo I took a math test, no studying, no calculator and I'm still pretty confident that I did well on it. I'll keep my fingers crossed. I have a shit load of work to do. My boo is sick so that sucks. Ok so my dilemma is...I don't know whether to buy a high end point and shoot camera, or a low end dslr. I am looking at the Canon Rebel XS. It's kinda calling my name. If I get a point and shoot, it will probably be a Sony or a Nikon. I will elaborate on this later.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Update since my last blog post

Went to the Black Cat Formal. Music sucked, but still had a good time with my boo. Everyone looked really nice. Junior Production was pretty awesome. I had two photo shoots this past weekend; both were quick and both went well. I got to spend a lot of time with Meghan this weekend, so that was nice. My phone has been acting really ridiculous lately; so I'm not too pleased with the CrackBerry right now. I'm excited about posting pictures of beautiful women with natural hair. Ok, that's it for now. I have a lot of work to do so I'm not feeling particularly chatty today.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Random thoughts about natural hair and other stuff

* Isn't it annoying when random people come up to you and say "ooh, can I touch it?" as if my hair is a pet, or a figment of their imagination. Well guess what? No, you can't touch it! I don't know where your hands have been!

*if you dye your hair with chemicals, is it still natural? What does natural really mean?

* is it just me, or does it seem a bit trendy to be natural these days? Does someone's reason for going natural really matter?

* what does natural mean to you? I think that natural ness is a spectrum. Really, natural is in the eye of the beholder.

* has anyone ever called you dread? I get called that all the time when I wear twists.

* do you get approached by random dudes with dreads more frequently since you have natural hair? I know I do. Two random dudes JUST walked up to me, trying to talk to me even though I'm clearly on the phone and uninterested in what they're saying.

* do you notice natural hair more now that you're natural? I have always noticed natural hair, even when I had a perm. I love the diversity and uniqueness of it.
* it's annoys me when someone has on headphones and I can still hear their music loud and clear.

* I hate when people stare at me. After staring at me for more than 3 minutes, you might as well say hello. You've obviously committed my face to memory, the least you can do is greet me.

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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

S.I.S. Barbie's New Fashion Forward Black Dolls Hit Stores

Finally there are dolls for us by us.Thanks to Stacey McBride-Irby, a 12-year veteran and African-American mother of two wanted her four-year-old baby girl to be able to play with dolls that were more in her likeness, So In Style dolls by Barbie was born. The collection reflects the spectrum of the Black community and are available at nationwide today."I am so proud and excited to finally share The So In Style dolls with girls of all ages", Stacey McBride-Irby told "I want my new So In Style dolls to not only be an authentic representation of my community and culture, but to also encourage girls to be inspired and dream big."Unlike Black Barbies of yesterday that appeared to have more Anglo facial features and hair texture, S.I.S. vary in complexion, coiffs and physical attributes with fuller lips, distinct cheek bones and wider noses.The dolls which range in price from about $8 to $25 features fashion forward BFFs Grace, Kara and Trichelle who are all about having a good time, but not before sharing their wisdom with the next generation. In the spirit of mentorship, McBride-Irby created a "little sister" for each of the dolls with diverse interests including music, math and science. Each doll's hair can be styled with the help of new Aqua curl technology which allows them to go from straight to curly with a spritz of a water bottle and hairstyling tools."I believe that a happy inspired childhood creates happy, inspired, powerful women," said McBride-Irby. "I want my new So In Style dolls to not only be an authentic representation of my community and culture, but to also encourage girls to be inspired and dream big."*For more info visit --KNB
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Monday, September 28, 2009

An Ode To My First Love

I can't stop thinking about her I

See her in my dreams and

Lately every night she's been

Waking me out of my sleep

Begging baby please

Just one kiss, just one touch

But I know it's a trap cause

One is never enough

But I fall into the trap anyway

The two of us imprisoned in sheets

Every time our souls meet

Potential turns into kinetic energy

And we battle each other

Cause we just have to compete

But I never win so

I've gotten used to defeat

And we argue like we can't stand each other

Two forces opposing

But she never stays mad for long cause

I am the one she's chosen

And sometimes I neglect her

Cause I don't want her to see

My jealousy...insecurity


But somehow she sees it anyway

Even though I wear my defenses like clothes

She has X ray vision so

To her I'm aways exposed

And if I don't drop my guard

She'll tear that shit down

She said “Get used to being completely naked

Whenever I'm around”

She wants me to be a nudist so

Eventually I give in

We make love then make war then

Do it all over again

And her love is perfect

There's no reason for me to cheat

Cause no one does me like she does

Always leaving me with soaked sheets

Always leaving me satisfied

While simultaneously wanting more

And she willingly grants my wishes

Always having something new in store

Willing to try new positions

If that's what I ask her for

And regardless of my intentions

She never walks out that door

Sometimes I use her. And she knows it

But she still sticks around

Don't deserve her. So I serve her

And I worship her ground

And she damn sure ain't perfect

But she's just right for me

She's my first true love

And her name is Poetry.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

This weekend's hairstyle

I am really diggin my hair! It is a collaborative effort between me and my mom. What do you all think? I figure I may as well play around with it before I start locks.
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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Yahoo! News Story - A world first: Vaccine helps prevent HIV infection - Yahoo! News

Jhavia Nicole ( has sent you a news article.
(Email address has not been verified.)
Personal message:

A world first: Vaccine helps prevent HIV infection - Yahoo! News

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What we've been reduced to

So this is what we've been reduced to.

No talking

No smiling

No fucking

No reconciling

I remember when we used to talk all the time
Your words my sustenance
The way you manipulated vowels and consonants made no sense
Your tongue wrapped around each letter and I would follow suit
I wrapped around you
And we talked.
For hours on end
The time that existed between conversations was irrelevant
All that mattered was your words
My words
Our words
Our world...
Came crashing down
And this is what we've been reduced to

No talking

No smiling

No fucking

No reconciling

I remember when we used to smile all the time
As constant as the rising and setting of the sun
Grins spread across our faces like jam on toast
Making life sweet
Your smile, illuminating, has a domino effect
Causing my mouth to follow suit and smile
But now teeth remain imprisoned behind cold lips
This is what we've been reduced to

No talking

No smiling

No fucking

No reconciling

I remember when we used to fuck all the time
Couldn't keep our hands.lips.mouths.bodies off each other
I mean to the point where our skin touched so much that our
complexions mixed and we became the same color
But bodies in heat are no longer intertwined between sheets It's like
the fire that used to provide warmth just burns now
And this is what we've been reduced to

No talking

No smiling

No fucking

No reconciling

I remember when we used to talk and make up
Smile and make up
Fuck up and make up
But now apologies are few and far between
Neither of us want to admit we're wrong
And neither of us want to admit that something ain't right so...

This is what we've been reduced to.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Does length really matter?

As much as I love natural hair blogs and sites, today I am annoyed. I
was reading this blog, and the blogger mentioned APL. Now this was
like the 10th time I have seen that acronym, but I didn't know its
meaning. Every time I see it I think: what the hell does THAT mean???
So I eventually found it through Google and it means ARM PIT LENGTH.
WTF? All these acronyms are annoying me. Bsl for bra strap length, twa
for teeny weeny afro, the list goes on. I mean I get it, but it kinda
bugs me that there is like an acronym for every hair length
What's the big deal about hair length? It's seems like length is more
important than health. It's not like I never wanted long hair, cause I
did. But once I realized the maintenance it would entail, I began
consistently cutting my hair to keep it at this medium length that I
often complain about. Now I'm not as concerned about the length of my
hair. I'm just glad that it's the healthiest that it's been in years,
and its so soft that I want to touch it all the time and not put weave
in it. And the best thing is: I don't have a dandruff problem anymore.
My head doesn't itch as much, my scalp feels clean. I started using
all natural stuff on my hair (coconut oil, glycerin, Shea butter, aloe
gel, essential and carrier oils, and WATER) and the dandruff POOF!
Anyway I just want the focus to be on the health of the hair, not the
length of it. Besides, healthy hair will grow.

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Nfinite Dream
Dream forever.

You Are Not Your Hair

Saw this on Naturally Leslie's blog and decided to post it on mine.

You Are Not Your

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Nfinite Dream
Dream forever.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Check out the Scotties

Practicing their rowing technique for the Dragon Boat Race
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14th Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival

More pictures! The first is a picture of Asian shaved ice cream and fruit. It was really good! The other one is a Laotian band.
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14th Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival

Pictures from the Dragon Boat race that we are at right now... It is beautiful out here! Plus Scotties are competing so of course we're having a great time!
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Thursday, September 10, 2009

I've decided...

That I'm going to loc my hair. I think that would be good for me. In theory growing a super fro sounds wonderful, but I really don't feel like it's for me. I have become absorbed in hair blogs and that has made me more aware of my hair than i've ever been. Maybe too aware. Cause now my hair is a source of stress and it shouldn't be. My hair and I both need to chill. So I'm gonna lock it while I lock down on these books.
Every day I feel like I should loc my hair. The feeling keeps getting stronger. I'm excited about it. So the Fro Chronicles will become the Loc Chronicles.
But first I gotta get the money to get someone to start them. I can maintain them myself. I think I want henna too.

We shall see!

For now I will be wearing protective styles and the puff occasionally.
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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Accessorize the puff!

A couple ways I accessorized this past weekend.

I do love the puff, I'm tired of wearing my hair out though cause it's starting to feel like the elements are getting to it, so I will probably be putting in Afro or Marley twists really soon. My hair feels dry today and I don't know why, because I co washed and moisturized, then flat twisted it and tied it up with a satin scarf. That usually works well and makes my hair feel great. I'm starting to think that flat twists aren't as good an idea as they used to be. When I take down the flat twists my hair tends to feel dry. But if I do a bantu knot out my hair feels really nice. Two strand twist outs are cool, they just don't look as good as they used to. Maybe I need to do smaller twists. I don't know.
Just my hair woes.

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Saturday, September 5, 2009

Detroit Free Press - Obama's lesson plan for schoolchildren

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Obama's lesson plan for schoolchildren

Nothing online has brought out more discussion in the last 48 hours than President Barack Obama's plan to address schoolchildren Tuesday.

As Obama wages his divisive quest for health care reform, parents across the country balked at not having the opportunity to pre-approve the message.

The White House has said the speech is not a political one, but one that will stress studying hard and staying in school.

Locally, several school districts have said they will not show students the speech.

Here's a round-up of coverage from across the Web: refutes comments by Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on this being the first time the president has addressed the nation's schoolchildren.

"President George H.W. Bush gave an address to schools nationwide in 1991, from a junior high school in Washington, D.C. News reports from the time said the White House hoped that the address would be shown at schools nationwide, and Bush began his remarks by saying he was talking to 'millions" of students 'in classrooms all across the country.'"

* See Bush's complete remarks to schoolchildren.

The Washington Times said in a Thursday editorial the speech was an effort to expand the president's "cult into the classroom:"

"In a move suggestive of the Pyongyang public school system, the U.S. Department of Education recommended that before the speech students collectively brainstorm questions like, 'Why does President Obama want to speak with us today? How will he inspire us?' Classrooms are to be festooned with 'notable quotes excerpted (and posted in large print on board) from President Obama's speeches about education,' presumably alongside benevolent-looking images of the dear leader."

In a Friday editorial, the New York Times called the controversy "overheated and bizarre:"

"What is most disturbing about all this is what it says about the parents - and the fact that they have such little regard for their children's intelligence and ability to think."

Over at, blogger Michael Shaw says conservatives are using the controversy as a scare tactic:

"Beyond all the 'state indoctrination' and even Hitler Youth analogies being propagated by Obama's school chat, I'm wondering how much there is (or is also) a racist meme at play. It's something along the lines of: You can't trust your children alone with this man ... knowing how black men are. Wink, wink."

Much of the controversy has stemmed from the Department of Education's lesson plans that are to go along with Obama's speech. A first draft of the lesson plans encouraged students to write letters to themselves on how they could "help the president," according to the Wall Street Journal.

You can see the revised lesson plans for Prekindergarten-6 and and grades 7-12 below. You can double click to view them larger, or hit the full screen toggle.

Lesson plan: Prekindergarten - 6th grade

Lesson plan: 7th grade - 12th grade will hold a live stream of Obama's speech at noon Tuesday if you wish to see it.

Contact MARK W. SMITH: Follow him on Twitter: @markdubya.

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Thursday, September 3, 2009

Honey Bee

I thought you were a honey bee and I
Wanted to be wherever the honey be cause
Honey is sweet but its good for you too...

As were you.

Well, that's what I thought but
I believed and was deceived by the buzz...
You made me buzz.
Chemistry so kinetic that it resonated through me like vibrations
You buzzed and I came.
Addicted to your hypnotic sound
I clung to you.
Cause you were sweet like honey and just as sticky
I was stuck and
Couldn't let go without your residue being left on my fingers...
Honey Bee
Using me like a hive
Filling me with nectar and storing your secrets in me
Making me feel like home...
Your praise made me bloom like honeysuckle and I
Left pollen on everything I touched
Telling the world of your sweetness...
Honey bee
Treating me like a queen bee...
But that was then and now
You just sting

I can taste the memories of us.
I savor the ones that are sweet and
Spit out the sour ones and
That is what you get.
Words from me that are hard for you to swallow cause
They no longer taste good...
But they're real
And now you're bitter.
The honey that used to drip from your lips is gone
I realized that honey was really aspartame
Way too sweet to be real and you left behind an unpleasant aftertaste

Now when you speak you spout vinegar.
My mind puckers up at the sound of your voice
Everyone knows that honey is the way to keep fly girls like me but
You can't possibly be the bee you used to be so...
Honey bee gone.
You stung me and it hurt but

I didn't bleed

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

My hair last weekend

I watched a You Tune video by BlackOnyx77 and she did a puff with a pompadour. This was my take on that style. It's not exactly the same of course, but she did give some good tips that I plan on utilizing more often, particularly the one about using hair pins to keep her headband from slipping.

My hair today

Today I am rocking a puff. I like this style cause its simple and it doesn't necessarily have to always look the same. I am going to invest in some scarves to jazz up my puff.
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Friday, August 28, 2009

Oldies but goodies

(Click to see full images) These are old pictures, but I thought I would post them anyway. This was taken in the beginning of 08. I have pretty much maintained the same length since 2006. Now I am ready to grow it out. My only issue is my edges. They are quite thin. They've always been a little thin, but micros took it to another level. So I am trying to grow my edges in thicker and overall grow my hair out. I am in the process of making lifestyle changes not for the sake of my hair, but for all of me, inside and out.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Reminiscing on my good hair day

Ah! The good ole days! (I know I know- it was just yesterday)
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Photo of bad hair day

I'm obviously not pleased. But hey- gotta show the good AND the bad.
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Bad hair day

I am not pleased with my hair today. And what makes it worse is that I have class today. I don't understand how my bantu knot out came out nice yesterday but looks like crap today.
I'm obviously frustrated. So I put on a hat. Or a net. Or a cap. I don't know what these thins are called but they cover the back of your hair and not the front. I guess its a cap. Anyway, I'm wearing one of those. It's decent looking but it's black and I'm wearing all brown today. I know black matches everything but... This is NOT the look I was going for.
On a brighter note, I'm pleased with my accessories. They're pretty fly. So anyway, I am probably going to put back in my Marley twists or Afro twists. I don't have time to worry about my hair in the morning.
I don't know. I'm gonna co wash my hair tonight and probably flat twist it. Or I may go out on a limb and bantu knot it again. We shall see. I wonder how I would look with comb twists. I kinda want to try some. I like how neat they generally look.
Well, I'm on my way to class. Hope I don't get swine flu in the process of trying to get an education.
I will post bad hair pictures later.
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Tuesday, August 25, 2009 - Jenice Armstrong: Damaging hair battle

Jenice Armstrong: Damaging hair battle
By Jenice Armstrong
Philadelphia Daily News
Daily News Columnist
Aug 11, 2009

ANY WOMAN with a head full of thick, naturally curly hair knows that a brush in the wrong hands can be a cruel device of torture. We discover this early in life, usually at the hands of a careless hairdresser whose job it is to smooth untamed, virgin curls into some semblance of what can pass as socially acceptable. It shouldn't be this way, though. Hair care should be a pleasant, bonding experience, even if you have the misfortune of being "tender-headed," as they used to call it back in the day.

But, too often, it can be painful and loaded with the kind of damaging negativity that has left many a woman reaching for chemical relaxers and flatirons no matter how badly they damage their hair. It's a case of the psychological scarring manifesting itself on the outside. I'm on this particular rant because over the weekend a friend showed me a disturbing YouTube video of a woman vigorously brushing an African-American child's thick, curly mane as the youngster screams in agony. The woman does it heartlessly, pulling and yanking as the child struggles to break free.

The video, called "nappy a- hair," is difficult to watch. The first time I saw it, I didn't make it all the way through because of all the yelling. The little girl's pain is palpable. She's flailing and struggling.

It's uncertain if the woman in the video is the child's mother, but it is clear she doesn't know how to cope either with the child's voluminous mane or with her own private demons. As the little girl squirms and tries to get away from all the yanking on her hair, the woman imprisons her between her knees. Another time, she leans over the child to trap her as the little girl lies on her back. When the child tries to protect her head, the woman shouts, "move your f------- hand!" You can even see hair lying on the floor. "I hate you!" the child yells.

Perhaps this level of abuse is something the woman experienced as a child and is now passing it onto the next generation. "Move ya hand. You've got a big gigantic, f------ knot - a nap - or whatever the hell you call it!" the woman says. Meanwhile, the videographer can be heard at one point laughing about "America's Funniest Home Videos" and taunting an adorably cute, curly headed boy that he's the next victim.

What happens on this video is disturbing on so many levels, particularly because of the negative message it sends the little girl about her hair: That there's something wrong with it. Somehow, it doesn't measure up. It's "less than." This is an age-old battle, most recently chronicled by Chris Rock 's "Good Hair" documentary, that you'd think the world would have moved past by now.

Also eyebrow-raising is how the video has sparked its own debate about whether or not what happened with the little girl qualifies as child abuse. The vast majority of the comments I scanned yesterday on YouTube or, soundly condemned the woman, who, people pointed out, appeared to have covered up her own hair with a wig or extensions.

"Natural Chocolate" wrote, "This is why so many women go and relax their hair. This could have all been resolved if people knew how to take care of our natural hair. If the hair was wet, with a little conditioner, this could have been prevented. That girl is going to get a perm as soon as she can and will probably hate her natural hair for the rest of her life. Poor Child . . . " Other commenters blamed the child's behavior for the harsh treatment she got, saying things like, "That little girl is bad or should I say 'strong willed.' "

Kind of like her hair, I suppose? Something that has to be forced into submission.

Give me a break.

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Bantu knot out

Since twist outs haven't been agreeing with me lately I figured I would do this instead. This was one of my favorite styles growing up. I like how it came out.
I just wish it were a little fuller- shrinkage aint no joke! It's all good though. It's my hair, and I love it.
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