Tag Archives: Friends

four simple words.

You would think I had forgotten how to write the way I’ve neglected this blog.

I feel like I owe it dinner, a movie, and a walk along the beach to make up for how triflin’ I’ve been to it. Maybe a Michael Kors bag too. But anyways, I’ve come back! I’m here now, I’ve blown the cobwebs off of my blog, and I have some things to say.

I could sit here and ramble about all of the great things that have happened to me since the last time that I put my fingers on my keyboard to get the thoughts out of my head (because there have been a LOT of fantastic moments), but that’s not what brought me back here.

I came back to vent. To say one seemingly simple sentence.

 

I want to move.

 

*exhales deeply*

 

Now, this isn’t the first time that I’ve said this sentence, nor is it the first time I’ve given considerable thought to the idea of leaving DC. But this past weekend, I had a chance to spend some time in North Carolina, and while I didn’t do much in the vein of a “typical” vacation, I had a chance to just drive around, take scenery in, and go do regular things in the city, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I want to be down South. Like…there is something about the South that just feels like home to me, though I’ve never lived there. I feel at home every time I go anywhere south of Virginia, and…I’m starting to feel like it’s time for me to see and experience something different. I’ve been in DC/Maryland for my entire life, and yes it’s home, but…I want to plant my feet somewhere else. I want to see if I’d like it somewhere else. If I don’t, home will always be there. DC will always be home to me; most of my friends and all of my family live here, but…I want out.

The catch? I’m scared. Completely. Effing. Scared.

I have a job here that pays me (albeit less than I should be making and it’s not really what I want to do), I have stability, I’ve got a pretty generous benefits package, most of my friends are here, I get to watch my goddaughter grow up right before my eyes, I’m currently not tied to a lease that I can’t get out of, my mother is here, home is here, everything I’ve ever known is here.

But is this what I want? I can’t tell you how many times that question pops up in my mind on a daily basis. That, or questioning if the life I think I want is the life that will be best for me. At one point, the life I have now is the life I thought I wanted, and well…we see how happy I am with that. :-|

The thought of trying to go after what it is I want to do with my life (which requires a complete sector shift, and might require an entire other graduate-level degree), packing up everything I have onto a U-Haul or into a Pod and shipping it somewhere other than down I-95 in Maryland, moving into a place completely by myself in a city that I’ve only visited a handful of times, and starting my life almost completely over, scares the living sh*t out of me. Being here in DC is safe. It’s comfortable. It’s familiar. Hell, it’s even nice. But I don’t know how me it is anymore. I just don’t know…

I just don’t know what it is I’m supposed to do…

 

If you’ve ever faced a decision like this, or if you’re like me and WANT to do something different, but haven’t made a move or a plan yet, leave me some thoughts in the comments. I’d love to gain some perspective/talk this thing on out. Thank you guys for still being here in spite of me being triflin’:)

 

I think I was saying, "C'mon son..."

My Day as a Model!

A couple of weeks ago, I forced my favorite photographer in the world to take pictures of me had the chance to step out from behind the camera and get in front of it for a change. Those of you that know me well know that photography is one of my passions, and I am in the process of making it a legitimate endeavor (even if it kills me first), and one of the things I desperately needed was an update to my personal photos. As in, I hadn’t had professional pictures taken of me since I graduated from college in 2009. How much has changed since then? I mean, I lost weight, I completely changed my hairstyle, I don’t dress the same…so in a nutshell, a lot changed, and it was time for me to go out and make some magic happen!

I knew that I wanted to do a set in a dress and do a set in everyday clothes – representative of how I have this newfound love and appreciation for dresses, but how I still love to wear my jeans and cardigans. The best photography mentor in the world, Keith, took me (and my makeup artist, Ca’Vette) out to a barn to get started. Yeah…you read that right…a barn. Now of course, the photographer in me was like “oh yeah, this will be epic…” I trekked on through, and this is what he created for me!

 

Me in a dress is still a miracle...

 

My sexy, serious face. ;-)

I think I was saying, "C'mon son..."

 

The smile looks fake, but it really isn't! I promise!

(All photos copyright of Keith Estep Photography)

Cute, right? I happen to think so too! ;-)

Here are some of my post-shoot thoughts:

1. It was FREEZING out there. DC had gone through a bit of a warm-up, but of course when it came time for my shoot, it felt like it was 32 degrees outside. :-| I mean, you see I had on a dress…my entire BEING was cold. I swear, even after I changed into the jeans, my teeth were still chattering, and I thought I was never going to thaw out, although I eventually did.

2. Ca’Vette BEAT my face! Looking at myself in the mirror before I got dressed was surreal enough, but then to see it on the computer screen?! The girl has skills. And she’ll make you laugh while she’s doing your makeup! ;-) I completely didn’t recognize myself, but it was in such a good way! Seriously, if you need your makeup done, whether it’s for photo shoots, events, weddings, whatever it is you need…hit her up. I promise you won’t regret it.

3. I don’t even know where to begin with the absolute admiration of my photos that I have. I don’t know if you can tell, but in real life, I’m really shy, so my first 10-15 minutes in front of the camera, I was like a deer in headlights. To get me over it, he joked on me (for the rest of the day) and started hamming it up with me. Seriously, he created a masterpiece here (and creates one every single time he gets behind a camera…), and I am forever indebted to him for this. He makes me sick on a day-in, day-out basis because I’m trying to get my pictures to look like his! I’m glad to have him in my corner and to be working with him, because I’d hate to have to go up against this dude…

If you love my photos, please give a major shoutout to Keith (and go book him for your own!). It wouldn’t have been possible without him! If you love my makeup, please follow Ca’Vette on Twitter, hit her up, and she will be more than glad to work with you. As for me? When I finally get my own photography thing off of the ground, you guys here will be the first to know!

Until next time…

 

 

#NaturalHair – The Soundtrack

the soundtrack to our curls. (all pictures from last.fm)

I love stereotypes. After reading that sentence, you may be giving me the o_O face, but I genuinely do. I love them because I love getting the chance to break them. (Or maybe I’m a masochist, who knows?) Now there are a million and one stereotypes out there about us girls that have decided to go natural. Everything from we’re all militant feminists, to we’re all vegan, to we could never dare be friends with ANY woman who could even remotely think of putting a perm in her hair.

(._.)

One of the BEST (and absolutely hilarious) stereotypes is that girls with natural hair only listen to “conscious” music. No Southern rap, no booty shakin’ music, and DEFINITELY nothing outside the genres of R&B/approved hip-hop.

 

precisely what my face looked like.

 

My good friends Peebz and Alise that brought this assertion to my attention, and I got confused. Real confused. So what they’re saying is, the minute I chopped all of the perm out of my hair, I forfeited the right to listen to such great (and sometimes ratchet as all hell) artists such as UGK, Project Pat, and Gucci Mane? Oh. Ok. What am I supposed to listen to on the way to the bar? I mean, right now, I’ll listen to Racks on Racks, or Rack City, or The Motto (YOLO!) but am I supposed to be listening to Next Lifetime, Golden, or Doo Wop (That Thing) instead? And all because I have baby locs in my hair? NO MA’AM, NO SIR. I liked my ratchet music when I had a perm, and I might like it even more now because I get to shake these locs to it!

Don’t get me wrong, I love every song that I just named at the end of that sentence, but I feel like my selection of music shouldn’t be expected to change SOLELY because I don’t perm my hair anymore. Sometimes the world needs a little ratchet music. My iTunes isn’t indicative of what anyone else listens to but me. Hmph.

That being said, it was only fitting that I came up with a playlist of music that is #NaturalHair tried, tested, and approved. Here is a sneak peek into some of what will  help all of my natural-haired sisters through those long bouts of detangling, co-washing, re-twisting, Bantu knotting, and deep conditioning.

Sister Jill...

 

Because I am *not* my hair.

Queen Mother Chaka! (And ATCQ)

See? All vetted through the #NaturalHair Committee on Musical Selections.

The playlist can be found on my Spotify, and the more than 200 songs should prove to be your new go-to track list on your hair days, or any other day that you want to get a dose of approved music. :-)

To my readers, I come asking you for your help. If you have any suggestions on songs that could be added to the playlist (and that are #NaturalHair friendly), please toss them into the comments, and I’ll add them to my ever-growing list of songs. Happy co-washing and conscious music listening!

 

This Thing Called Fear…

One of the most powerful emotions I have ever felt is fear. Fear has kept me from saying things, doing things, creating things…or it has caused me to do, say or be things other than what I wanted to do or who I wanted to be. Do you know how debilitating it is to see the life you want or yourself, but to be too afraid to even think about the steps you need to take to get that life? Or even worse, to know what you need to do, but to be too scared to move? That’s the kind of fear that gripped me. I’d know exactly what I wanted to do, but be too scared to do anything about it…which to me, is way worse than not knowing what you want to do at all. Up until recently, that was pretty much my sole method of operating. I’d be so gripped with fear, or with the “I’m not good enough” thought process that I’d never even make the first step. What kind of a life is that to live?

I’ll tell you — not a great one.

Over the last few months, I’ve had numerous conversations about dreams, destiny, and what it is I really want to do with my life. I’ve had them with people that have been in my life for a short time, and those that have been in my life for years. All of those conversations have led to a consensus: we all have dreams, they scare the mess out of all of us, but we feel like they are things we absolutely have to do. I would be a bold faced liar to sit here and say that my dreams don’t scare the crap out of me, because if I sit and think about it long enough, they truly do. I’m getting to the point now, though, where I am working around and through that fear. I can’t sit back any longer and wonder “what if I had taken that chance?” or “what if I had followed through on what I really wanted to do?” Life is too short to begin with, and the last thing I want to do is live with a whole bunch of regrets.

Does this mean that I’m going to have to step outside of my comfort zone? Definitely. Am I going to still be scared at some points? Of course! But my goal is to do it anyways. I’m trying to take risks that I normally wouldn’t take, to relentlessly pursue my dreams like my life depends on it, because it does. The very core of my being hinges on this journey to live the life I believe I’m destined to live. If I decide to give in to fear…if I decide to let it run my life, I will effectively die. Part of me will cease to exist, and I’m sorry, but I like all of me at this point. I need all of me to stay around, because well…I’m a pretty awesome person!

I’ve said all of this to say that I refuse to be ruled by fear anymore. It is a process to get out of this way of thinking, because I’ve conditioned myself/been conditioned to think this way for so long, but I am willing to go through the process in order to come out a better, more fulfilled, happier person on the other side. To you, my readers, I have to ask…am I the only one that’s been this gripped by fear? If not, what have you done to try and get over or around it to become the best you that you can be? Share with me in the comments; I’m sure we can all learn from each other.

Until next time, folks…

2011 – A Year In Review

I’ve been tossing around the idea of doing a “Year in Review” post for the last couple of weeks, and until recently, I had no idea of how I wanted to write it. Now that I know how to write it, it’s high time I get this thing out and in the open. It’s truly hard to believe that 2011 is winding down to a close. I feel like I was just surrounded by my friends, sipping champagne, and watching the ball drop. Now here I am, in the last week of the year, blessed to have gotten to this point, and amazed at how awesome of a year I had. The best way for me for me to remember my year, and to take you along for the ride with me is to give you the Top 10 (in no particular order) Moments of 2011. Here we go!

10. In April of this year, I decided that I no longer wanted to perm my hair…mostly because it was costing me too much money on a biweekly basis to keep it up. I went to the hair salon one day, asked my stylist to chop all of the perm out, and haven’t looked back since. Having a tiny fro (which then became a medium fro) was such an awesome thing – I gained some self confidence, got to play around with products, got some cool accessories, and really started coming into my own. A little less than a month ago, I decided to start the process of locking my hair, and I’m definitely excited to see where it is by the time I write a post like this in 2012!

9. I left the nest! In September of this year, I did what I had wanted to do since I graduated from college – move out of Mom Dukes’ house. Now, anybody that knows me knows that that wasn’t because we had a bad relationship or because she tried to dictate my life, because she didn’t, but it was time for me to spread my wings. I feel like my relationship with her is now stronger than ever, AND I have two of the best roommates a girl could ask for. Win-win!

8. This July, I took my first trip to Canada and descended on the city of Toronto for its annual Caribbean celebration, Caribana. I had the time. of. my. life. From the epic dinner I had with my friends upon getting into the city, to the parade, to the hype-as-hell Sunday night party, I had a ball up there. I’m sure I’m going back next year.

7. I’m a smaller version of myself than I was a year ago at this time. In December of 2010, I weighed 210 easy. Nowadays, I’m teetering around the 190 pound mark. I haven’t lost a pant size yet, and I need to get back into the gym/back into exercising and revamping my diet, but I’m making progress. 2011 showed me just how important it is to be fit, and to physically feel good about yourself, and that’s something I’m definitely taking into 2012.

6. I thought that 2010 was the year of meeting people from the internet. Nope, 2011 took the crown and took the crown early. From the now infamous Three Deez VSB Weekend in DC in April to the DMV Tweetup Cookout in June and all of the random encounters in between and beyond, I have met a lot of people from Twitter this year. Some of them have turned out to be really great friends, and I’ve shared some amazing experiences with a lot of the people I met this year. If you’re reading this and you were introduced into my life in 2011, I am so glad to have met you and I hope that 2012 tops how awesome this year was for all of the social happenings, and I hope we create even more memories next year.

5. I started this blog this year! I’d had a blog for a while, but I actually sat down and took the time to buy a dot com and start an adjoining Twitter account for my little corner of the internet in 2011. I haven’t posted like I wanted to, but I’m proud of myself for taking a chance on this, and so thankful to each of you reading this right now. You push me to continue honing my craft, and apparently, you care somewhat about what I have to say – that means the world to me.

4. 2011 was the year I got back to my roots, and rediscovered my dormant love and appreciation for photography. From taking photos to editing photos to looking at photos, I love everything about being behind the lens of a camera. 2012 is sure to bring a host of updates and progression in this area of my life, and if you want to follow my challenge to myself to take 1 picture a day for all of 2012, you can do so here.

3. Three words: The Foreign Exchange. If you’ve spent any time with me ever in life, you already know how I feel about them. So it’s only fitting that 2011 was the year that I first saw them in concert (3 times- Falls Church, VA, Baltimore, MD, and Charlotte, NC), and the year that I made it my mission to expose everyone I could to their music. If seeing them in concert and getting to meet them wasn’t awesome enough, they also have a picture I took from the Charlotte show as their Twitter avatar. *squeals* :-)

2. In the vein of music, 2011 was the year that I chose not to deny myself from seeing any and every concert I wanted to see. From Eric Roberson to Sade and John Legend; Jill Scott to The Foreign Exchange; Phonte and 9th Wonder to Rebirth Brass Band; to Jay Z/Kanye West and The Roots this coming Friday, I’ve exposed myself to a wide array of music, and have had experiences that I can’t put a price on. I have to keep that going next year…

1. I turned 25 back in October, and as cliché as it may sound, I really do feel like my life took a drastic change that day. It was that day I decided to cut out toxic people from my life, to focus on honing my God-given talents of writing and photography, to appreciate my family and friends more than I ever had before, to chase my dreams no matter how unrealistic they might currently seem, to open my mind to the idea of new ways of thinking, to take time to treat myself better than ever, and to simply have fun and chase my happiness down no matter what it took.

If you’ve made it this far, you’ll see that 2011 was a year of great change, great triumph, amazing discoveries, and life-changing experiences. Yes, there were negative experiences throughout the year, but they don’t really have a place in this post. The last year has taught me many valuable lessons about myself, and I am grateful for every experience I’ve had, whether it was viewed as positive or negative at the time. I hope that 2012 is an even better year for me, and equally as amazing for you, my readers. I appreciate you all, and Happy New Year!

Turkey Day Thoughts

Ah, Thanksgiving. The time of year where most of the leaves are on the ground, turkeys in all the grocery stores are gone before Wednesday of the week of the holiday, football comes on so many times in one week that I have a permanent smile plastered on my face, and Twitter becomes a peek into what people have sitting on their dining room tables (whether it’s edible or not is an entirely different post). Fun times, if you ask me. This Thanksgiving, however, is a tad bit different for me. For starters, it’s the first Thanksgiving week in the last 9 years that I’ve actually looked forward to. Ever since I lost 3 very important people to me in 2002-2003, the holidays just simply have not been the same. I always said that they wouldn’t go back to “normal” for me until I had a family of my own, but I’ve at least temporarily proven myself wrong for Thanksgiving this year. (We’ll wait until Christmas to see if I’m totally correct.) I think this year has gone back to “normal” for me because of another first – this is the first year of me being out on my own, and therefore, the first year where my mom (or another parent, whether it be a family member or friend) isn’t solely responsible for dinner. Amazing, right? With that being said, I have to dive into something I’ve wanted to talk about for a while on here: food.

For those people that know me outside of the good ol’ internet, they know that I’m famous for my cornbread, and can throw a pretty decent dinner together whenever I feel like cooking. In the summer, I’m good for salmon with a watermelon/mango/arugula salad on the side; in the spring/fall, I make a nice peach bbq chicken with sweet potatoes and corn; in the winter, I’m good for a Italian sausage pasta bake with a variety of veggies…and throw some other random meals in there; I just wanted to give you an idea of what I like to make. To be honest, I just started cooking a little over 2 years ago. And I started because I got bored. I had just started grad school, and didn’t have a job, so once my graduation money ran out for me to go out and have fun, I was basically stuck in the house. I got hungry quickly, so I figured I’d start cooking for myself. I mean, I had made things for myself before, but this was when I started cooking on a consistent basis, and when I started inviting people over to eat the food. The first meal I made for other people was bbq chicken, rice, and cornbread. I took it to a studio full of hungry men, and needless to say, I walked out empty-handed. Score!

That was the day I realized that me cooking for someone means something not only to the person eating the food, but to me as the person preparing it. It is actually an extension of how I feel about them or a way for me to show someone that I care about them. When I sit back and think about how much preparation, taste testing, time, and effort it takes to pull together a great meal…how could I not care about someone that I’m cooking for? In another sense, cooking is one of those things that’s therapeutic to me. That may be why I’m not building a tent in my feelings about Thursday – I (along with my roommates) get to prepare food for somewhere around 10 people, and I know it’ll take all day. Most people want to run away from the thought of having to spend all day in the kitchen, but now that it’s almost here, I really can’t imagine another way to spend my day. I’m really excited about this being my first Thanksgiving dinner that I’m preparing, and I’m truthfully thankful to have the opportunity to do this. I’m thankful that I’ll be surrounded by people that love me and care about me on this holiday, and that I’ll get to put my soul into the meal I’m making for them. :-)

No matter what your plans are for Thanksgiving, I hope that everyone reading this has an amazing one, and that you’re all surrounded by people you love, and by amazing food, football, and fun. I’m thankful to have each of you as readers, and to call most of you my friends. I’d lost sight of what this holiday is supposed to be about over the last few years, but I think I’ve finally gotten it together this year.

 

Share with me in the comments some things you’re thankful for! Enjoy the holiday!

One Year Later…

a year ago, I was here.

 

It’s only been a year.

But it feels like a lifetime.

I mean that in the best of ways. A year ago today, I started a long weekend down in Florida with Nick, Cheekie, Max, and Shon. I’ll spare you all of the details, since I wrote about that already. What I’m going to talk about today is my girls and how I feel about them. Thinking back over the last 365 days, it almost seems impossible that that was the first time I’d met these ladies, due to how integral each of them are in my lives today. It literally feels like I don’t remember most of what my life was like before they got here. I think that after I met them, the person I used to be got swept away, and made room for the woman that I am becoming today. It may seem hard to believe that 5 people that met in the chat function of a UStream could become sisters in the matter of 3 days, but that really happened. That weekend proved to me several things that I never thought were possible.

First, it proved that women really can get along. I mean, we were in a hotel room with one bed, a pull out sofa, a bajillion bags of luggage, one bathroom, umpteen containers of makeup, a million shoes, and one TV. And yet, everyone came out unscathed and loving each other at the end of the weekend. If THAT’S not a miracle, I’m not sure that they exist. Second, it proved that sometimes the best things for you come from the most unexpected places. I had no expectations when I went to Florida other than to have a good time digging my toes into sand in 80 degree weather in October. As long as I got my nap on the beach, I was good. I got more than I bargained for. As a result of that trip, I gained four sisters, the opportunity to meet *many* other people that I consider to be my sisters/friends, a gang of girls coming to DC, a trip to Toronto, most of them coming back to DC for my birthday, and an open invitation to various cities across the country and in Canada. How amazing is that? Off of the 5 of us coming together for this one trip, I’ve gained like 20 friends. I’m personally amazed at the reach that I have now, and how many people from all different walks of life, professions, and parts of the country that I truly do love as a result of the trip.

I’m blessed beyond measure to be able to call these 4 ladies my sisters. They’ve seen me through some of the hardest times of my adult life and have been there for some of the best times I’ve had as an adult. Although we don’t talk every day, we all know that each of us is just a phone call/text message/email/GChat away, and it makes me feel overwhelmingly happy to know that I have that type of support from women who weren’t even on my radar at the beginning of 2010. They’ve pushed me to become a better writer, a better steward, a better friend, and a better woman, and for that, I’m forever indebted to them. There’s something to be said about the solidarity of the friendship between women, and as the youngest member of the group, I have some fantastic role models to look up to.

Nick – Even though you and I don’t talk every day like we used to, I still love you just the same. I love hearing you get mad and your Jamaican accent coming out, and to hear you laugh seriously sends me into a fit of laughter. You’re hilarious to me, and absolutely gorgeous, and an all-around amazing person. You’ve been through a lot in the short time that I’ve known you, but you’ve always kept your head above water, and have come out on top thus far. I know it gets hard for you, but I want you to know that you are amazing, and serve as an inspiration to me every single day. You inspired me to go ahead and create this blog as a dot com, and to let my voice be heard even if it seemed like no one was listening. I don’t take anything that I’ve learned from you for granted, and I look forward to all that the future has to bring both of us. You’re awesome, I can’t WAIT to see you, and I love you!

Shon – Over the last year, you’ve become my voice of reason even when it seemed like I couldn’t be talked down. I love that you listen to me, and hear me out, and give me practical solutions to problems I surely won’t care about in the next few years, all while reminding me that it’s normal to feel this way since I’m only 25. You’re one of the wisest people I have ever met, and you have such a loving, giving, caring, and beautiful spirit that it truly radiates from the inside out. It is a joy to be able to spend extended amounts of time with you, and you have truly edified me and given me counsel in ways I can’t even express. I love watching you be in love, and you deserve every single grain of happiness that is already here and that is soon to come. I absolutely love the fact that you’re here in DC with me, and I can see you so we don’t go through withdrawals. ;-) I love you!

Max – I almost have no words. You’ve been open arms for me throughout so many of my horrendously awful situations, been the tough love I’ve needed to get back in shape, and been my biggest cheerleader. Most of all, you taught me how to believe in myself in spite of what other people may do, say, or think about me, and that has proven to be invaluable. I can only hope to be as magnificent, poised, blunt, honest, and unbelievably hot as you are when I hit my 30s; with you in my corner, I know I have no choice! I love you for loving me in spite of myself, and for always being there with open arms just when I need you. I can’t wait to see you again and have that long, drawn-out hug that we always do when we see each other. I love you honey!

Cheekie – Lord have mercy. Who knew that a year later, you’d have turned into one of my best friends? You bring out the best part of me, and the part of me that I thought left when my father left this Earth. I can be as silly, as ratchet, as funny, and as open with you, because it’s really like we’re almost the same person (scary, right?). You’ve given me the inspiration to write again, to find my voice, and to get back to what I know I have a God-given gift to do. From the depths of my heart, I sincerely appreciate everything that you have done for me and my life over this last year. All of the gchats, tweets, phone calls, co-blogs, Tumblr posts, and visits have truly made me a better person. I don’t know where I would be without you, and I’m glad I never have to find out. I know since we’re silly all the time, I don’t tell you enough, but I love you girl!

All of these women here have had an indelible impact on my life. From sharing cocktails and breakfasts by the pool a year ago, to sitting in our respective homes reading this blog today, their influence is all over every single aspect of my life. I thank each and every one of them for sticking with me on this journey, and for being a part of one of the best years of my life. I love you all, and here’s to many more years of friendship! :-)

Feature Fridays – Party Rock Anthem

Howdy folks! By the time you read this, I will be in the land of -milk and honey- maple syrup, poutine, and the Drake hand – Toronto, Canada! It’s my first time ever crossing the border to the north, and I’ll be experiencing Caribana with a few of my closest e-friends. I’ve been looking forward to this trip for MONTHS now, so I’m thoroughly excited that it’s finally here, and that I’m finally there!

With all that being said, and with us going for Caribana, it’s only right to (correctly) assume that there will be a whole lot of partying done. Day in and day out, I plan to be having an absolute ball. And you know what song gets me in that mindset quicker than any other song out right now? That’s right, LMFAO’s “Party Rock Anthem.” Seriously, everytime I hear this, whether I’m in the car driving down the highway, walking down the street to go to work, or randomly out in the streets, I always dance to it and do a little fistpump. I’m sure I’ve scared plenty of people on the bus when the song comes on my iPod.

LMFAO – Party Rock Anthem

After hearing this, how can you not want to party? Like right now as I write this in my dark living room, I want to go grab a shot glass and shuffle around the living room by myself. That, or find the nearest flash mob, put on some oversized sunglasses, leopard print leggings, and a jean vest, and shuffle with them. Either way! Even though I have no idea what the song is really about, it’s a damn good way to get in the mood to party. I should warn the ladies I’m going to be with this weekend that they will hear this song as I’m getting ready to go out. Multiple times. :-)

To all of you out there reading, what songs do you use to get you in the mood to party? I’ve got a ton in my head myself, but this one is definitely at the top of my list. Share with me in the comments – maybe we’ve got some of the same ones in common! Until next time, folks…

5 Reasons I Want A Man…

reasons 1-5.

It’s no secret to people that know me that I’m single. Single as a dollar bill as I love to say. And you know what, that’s ok! Sometimes I relish in the fact that I’m a single girl living in this cool world with no one to answer to, no one to check in with, and no one to have to integrate into my already busy life. BUT…I’m still human, and more importantly, I’m still me, so…I know I want a relationship. In some ways, I’m not even 100% certain why I want a relationship, but I know I do. That whole…support, having each other’s back, and keeping each other in check thing is kinda attractive to me, what can I say? In keeping with my tradition of letting you all have first dibs on my mental mind, I thought I’d share with you my top 5 ridiculous reasons why I want a man. These are in no particular order, so just go with me.

1.) To have someone to cook for
Ya’ll. Listen. This past month or so has been absolutely ridiculous for me. I have never felt so many urges to cook for someone in my life. I’ve literally gone to the grocery store and dropped bills on bills on bills on groceries just to come home and cook for someone! The person that’s benefitted the most from this is my good friend Shon, since she’s been present for damn near everything I’ve cooked in this recent domestic binge. From salmon with watermelon and shrimp salad to turkey burgers and fried plantains to shrimp and broccoli alfredo to nutella cheesecake bars, she’s been here for it all. She’s even said to me, “Girl, if you had a man, I’d tell you to make this for him…” -_- hmph.

2.) To have someone to shop for
I know, this sounds absolutely ridiculous, but…let me explain. I have a slight sneaker addiction/obsession. More than half of the shoes in my closet are sneakers, and well…if I could wear them everyday, I swear I would. Now everytime I walk into Finish Line, I first head for the kids section to see what I want, but then I somehow always end up in the men’s section looking at shoes! Whose feet can fit those? Not mine! I walk past Nike Air Max 95s, Polo sneakers, Sperry Top Siders (even though they aren’t sneakers), take a longing glance at them, and walk out of the store empty headed and sad faced. And don’t get me started on when I go into Macy’s and hit the Polo section and go into Express to the dress shirt and tie section. Apparently, I want someone to spend money on. Where in the hell did this come from?

3.) To have someone to go places with me
It’s common knowledge to anyone that knows me that I like to go out and have fun and that I love to travel. Going to the bar? Count me in. Headed to a sporting event? Yep, I’m there. A concert is in town? Hell yeah, I’m going! The crew wants to go somewhere? I’m putting my planning hat on and making the reservations. The problem is…who the hell is going with me to these things? I love my friends to death, and love it when they go places with me, but I know they have lives! And their lives don’t always revolve around making sure I have fun when I go somewhere. For me to have a built in travel/fun buddy? MAN! That would be dope as hell. Granted, he’d actually have to like to do some of the same things I like to do, but…we’re not talking specifics right now!

4.) To have another driver around
I’m about to start shouting in here just from typing that. The thought of not having to always drive myself?! Listen. I think outside of work, I spend more time in my car than I do anywhere else. Everywhere I go, I drive, and sometimes I even drive other people where they need to go. The gas usage doesn’t really bother me (yet), but the time spent behind the wheel is starting to drive me up a wall. Sometimes I wanna text while I’m in the car…other times, it’d be nice to catch a quick 5-10 minute nap while I sit in the passenger seat…can I do that now? Nope! Do ya’ll know how excited I would be to just be like “hey babe, can you drive from Waldorf to Landover to Silver Spring to Baltimore and back to Largo tonight?” *does dougie* Seriously, the man might get a meal and a new shirt off of that alone…

5.) To have someone’s clothes to steal
If you looked in my pajama drawer, you’d swear I was a semi-pro basketball player. Nothing but tank tops and basketball shorts in there since I moved the lingerie to a different drawer. Now I remember there was a conversation on Twitter about how if a girl takes a guy’s clothes, that means something serious between the two of them. Let me tell you how I’d love to be sleeping in a shirt that smells like my man or in a pair of his clean basketball shorts. *rolls around in bed at the thought* I have a thing about scent, so to have something that smells like the man I’m with? *shakes head* If I steal his clothes, I’ll have built in pajamas whenever I stay at his place or he stays at mine…I think that’s a win-win for everyone involved.

So there you have it folks – my top 5 absolutely ridiculous reasons why I want to be in a relationship. What say you, good people? Any of my single readers want to be in a relationship, and if so, can you relate? For my readers out there who are living the boo’ed up life, have you ever had urges like the ones I talked about here? Take a minute and share some thoughts with me…until next time!

Living for the Weekend…

Ah, the weekend. It’s the best part of the week if you ask me. Sometimes the work week can be so long and mundane that I’m practically begging for Friday to come back around. On the weekend, I don’t have to get up early (at least not early like I would if I was going to work), I can lounge around in bed if I want, and it gives me time to do the things I really love to do…like writing, taking pictures, and hanging out with my friends. But this past weekend? This past weekend was unlike any other weekend I’ve had in recent memory. It was chock full of things I’ve never done before. Now normally, I wouldn’t be particularly intrigued by me doing random things on the weekend, but this time is different. Things happened this weekend that I swore in a million years would never happen, and I’m still in awe that they actually happened. Well, are you going to tell us what happened?

Glad you asked! For starters, I went thrift store shopping for the first time ever in life. Peebz sent out a Facebook invitation for people to join her at the Unique Thrift Store in Silver Spring, MD, and I figured what the hell? I’ve never done it, I’ve heard that people have gotten great deals on clothes, and I wanted to go do something different. While there, I finally met my Twitter buddy Eric, and me, Peebz, her daughter Tee, and Eric all traipsed around the store, finding random hilarious things along the way, and having a ball roaming around that HUGE store. I had a really fun time thrifting with them, and I got somewhere around 8 pieces of clothing for just about $60. That definitely wasn’t the last time that I plan on doing that, and I now have friends and family members that want me to take them with me the next time that I go find some more things out in Silver Spring.

Although I’ve lived in the DC Metropolitan area my entire life, I don’t take the time that I should to properly explore my city and surrounding areas. Going thrifting on Saturday and taking Peebz back home allowed me to see parts of the city that I haven’t seen in a while, and I really enjoyed the experience. Far too often, I just hit 50 West, head onto New York Avenue, make a right on Florida, end up on U Street, or keep going to Adams Morgan, and I’d forgotten that DC is so much more than that. I saw parts of the city that I had never seen before, and other parts that I hadn’t seen since I was a kid…I’ve got to take some time out this summer to go to the less-traveled, but exceedingly authentic parts of where my family is from.

To round my weekend out, I went to and participated in One Degree From Me’s DC Quarterly Flow Dating event. Now, anyone that knows me knows that I don’t even go to work alone (my mom and I commute in together to save money – stop judging), much less go to a dating event alone, but guess what? I did it! And to top it all off, I had an amazing time doing so. It was so nice to meet different people from all parts of the country that ended up in DC, as well as people that had been here their entire lives. There were people from all different walks of life, from all different professions, and at all different points of their lives with one goal in mind — to have meaningful conversation with other like-minded individuals. I got to meet some very friendly men and women on Saturday evening, and the entire atmosphere was warm, inviting, and pleasant. I was especially proud of myself for actually engaging people in conversation…I love talking to people, but sometimes my introvert starts to show and I end up in the back of the room just taking it all in. I didn’t let that take me over this time. I started conversations with people, maintained ones with others, and ended up with contact information for a couple of guys and a couple of women. I’m sitting here in anticipation of the email that I’m supposed to get with my mutual interests’ contact information in it, but regardless of the outcome of that email, I’m extraordinarily proud of myself for getting out of my own way and doing something I never thought I was capable of doing. It was just the boost I needed to not only become an active participant in my dating life, but to get out there and to try new things and see what life has to offer me. I have to give a special shoutout to Paul Carrick Brunson and his One Degree From Me team for putting on an amazing event, and him for being such a warm and inviting person, and for striking up conversation with everyone that came to him wanting to talk.

Takeaways from the weekend? 1) Try new things – there’s no telling what can happen if you just go out there and do something that you were previously afraid/skeptical of doing. 2) Have some fun – I literally spent all weekend laughing, joking, talking, and with a smile on my face. That doesn’t happen often, but I’m making it my priority to see to it that it happens more often than not now. 3) Get out of your own way – I don’t know how many times I had to tell myself this on Saturday night, but I’m certain that if I didn’t, I wouldn’t have had as much fun as I did. All of these lessons can be applied to my life, and I have faith that they can be applied to the lives of you all reading as well. If you’ve gotten this far in the post (I salute you), let’s talk about what things you think you can do to add some variety back into your life, or some things you’ve always wanted to do, but have always been too afraid to attempt.

Until next time…