Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Goodbye 2013! It's Been Real!

Wow, it’s hard to believe that today is the last day of the year 2013. This morning as I stood waiting for the bus to go to work, I began to think back on the year and how much has changed in my life and our world has changed over the past year. I think back to the emotional mess I was this time last year. I am so much stronger and resilient than I ever imagined I could be. I won my first 5K race this past year (no easy feat!). I changed careers. I moved to a new city. I became a published journalist. I stopped focusing on what I am and more on who I am. 2013 was a year of me becoming radical in my actions as well as my thoughts--less talk, more action. I learned to savor life, not just in being but in doing. Each experience, whether bad or good, should be embraced. Experiences shape your character. We should use them as tools to become who the Creator has made us to be. I have been blessed by the love I seen on the faces of new brides and grooms, new family members (blessed Prince Amir), and by the many children of friends, near and far. I have gotten to see friends accomplish great things, grow as individuals, come into their own, become business owners, and share pearls of wisdom that I use each day. Thanks to you all. My life is more enriched by you all.  In regards to my children, they have really grown over the past year. They are amazing and I am blessed to be their mother. This year is ending on a positive note. I can see things more clearly now than ever before. I am more grateful than I ever have been. I could go on and on with the many things that the Most High has done for me, my family, as well as all of those connected to me. I used to pray that my reach would be extended and God is doing that each day. Through writing, reading, speaking, praying, my outreach into the world continues to grow and strengthen. More things are to come for 2014. I have an intense feeling of anticipation…….I feel greatness arriving.

“Change your mind and change your life.”


Peace & Blessing,


Monday, December 23, 2013

Enjoy Your Life

Have you ever come to the realization that you are not over a particular thing in your life, whether it was a traumatic experience, a bad breakup, or the loss of a loved one? I personally have had my share of bad experiences, much like anyone else. But, what I have realized it that some of these things greatly affect me today, as much as it did when it happened. It may be something that someone says to you or the way they treat you that leads you back into that dark place of pain. How do you release the pain? How do you truly move forward? Well, first of all, you have to admit that it happened and that it affected you. Then, you must allow yourself to “feel” the emotions related to the event.  I did not allow myself to feel. I worked myself into a frenzy and refused to cry. I placed myself into a prison of sorts; impervious to the raw pain, not allowing myself to feel weak. And lastly, we must continue to live. We should savor each moment of our lives. Allow ourselves to love. Embrace change in our lives. Experiencing new things in our lives, no matter how small, is enriching. The older I become, the more I relish life. Life is good.


Peace & Blessings,


Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Definition of a Nigga

"Nigga"-the word is for some a source of pain; for others it is a term of endearment. But, I submit that there is a subset of individuals that do not know that they are "niggas" in its definitive description. According to dictionary.com, nigga or nigger is "a person of any race or origin regarded as contemptible, inferior, ignorant, etc. The one word that stands out in this definition, in my opinion is ignorant. Whomever coined the phrase "ignorrance is bliss" was sadly misinformed. An ignorant person is often insensitive of how their behavior negatively affects others. For an individual to prejudge you based off your race is unfair but yet it continues. To not be given a fair shake is plain, to not be allowed to play on "an even playing field"; all are aspects of the Black American experience. It is a sad world we live in. People often say "here they go playing the race card" or "Racism is over, it's a thing of the past". But, that is so far from the truth. We, as Black Americans, continue to have daily struggles that White America has no idea about. We are looked at wrong, we are held back, we are disproportionately incarcerated, our communities are struggling, our children displaced and abused. Misconceptions about who we are continue. I am not saying that no other race is without struggle, but the struggle of us ebony toned individuals is not only here but in every country on the planet. But why? Not every black person calls them friend "Nigga". Not every black person smokes marijuana. Not every black person drops out of school. There are some great people in the "hood". This system in the United States was established without regard for us as a people and those barriers continue to cause us to have to struggle in the way that we do today.
We must come to the realization that the only answer is the destroy and rebuild. The destruction has to come from within. We cannot require others to treat us in high regard when we do not require that of ourselves. I would like to submit also that we are not without blame. We must find our way back to "Black Pride". We must learn to love ourselves at our very core. Time out for minds being led by materialism. Black zombies--I have had enough of you! Educate yourself and your children. Let go of the slave mentality. Demand more of yourself and the world will have to give us more. Raise your standards. We are beautiful black people! I love each of you. Nigga is not a black person! You are the descendents of Kings and Queens, not thugs and hoodrats.We come from kingdoms not projects. Our blood flows like the Nile River and if united we cannot fail. We are conquerers! If you do not believe, research Chaka Zulu and you will see an example of what we can accomplish if we utilize the strength within.

Wake Up!

Peace & Blessings!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Black Woman

Black woman, where is your pride? You are the mother of nations. You have history coursing through your veins. I am disturbed by the images of us that I see each day. Are we only a set of thighs, breasts, and a behind? Is our flesh the only portion of us that is valuable? What about our daughters? What lessons are we teaching them by “twerking” and posting picture of our bodies on Social media for likes? Is your worth only found between your thighs? I am sorry if it sounds like I’m preaching but I wanted to address this issue. Why are we so quick to talk about one another and put each other down? We are sisters and we should uplift one another. We are the backbone of the family. Our family needs us. Our community needs us. Our sisters need us. I love you my sister. I love you Black Woman. Have fun but never lose respect for yourself. You are rarer than a ruby. You are more precious than the rarest jewels. You a worth more than your fleshly weight in gold.



Peace & Blessings,


Friday, December 13, 2013


In the realm of ideas, everything depends on enthusiasm; in the real world, all rests on perseverance.”

— Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Perseverance is defined in Webster’s dictionary as being “ the quality that allows someone to continue trying to do something even though it is difficult”. In my life, perseverance is my creed; it is in my blood. As a little girl, I would watch my grandmother work, care for her family, care for others (often people that the world had turned away from), as well as friends and any and everybody in between. She was not rich in material things and sometimes I would wonder how she could do so much for so many people continuously without losing her zeal. She never drove a car a day in her life. She once told me that she just did not trust the open road. She did attend college for a time but had to return to the farm in the “Skillet” because her family needed her to help so, she gave up her aspirations to be a cosmetologist and became a well-loved cook at the Glass House. Now, in order for you to know what the Glass House restaurant is, you have to be from the metropolis of Latta, SC and you have to be of a certain age! Nevertheless, she touched many people and she would fight every day to do the best she could. I learned with her that no matter the obstacle, you must continue. Life is full of trials, but you must continue to fight in order to win. Perseverance- it is what makes a mother who has been up with a newborn all night, still make it to work on time each day. Perseverance-it is what makes the father who has worked all night, still make it to his child’s school performance later the same morning. Perseverance-it is what drives the boy whose parents are addicts to continue to go to school and do well even though the condition of his life is one of degradation. Perseverance-it it what makes that teen mother continue to go to school and work for a better life for her child and herself when the father is nowhere to be found. Persevere through the obstacles. God gives his hardest battles to his strongest soldiers.


Peace & Love,


Friday, December 6, 2013

To Nelson Mandela

Dear Nelson,
I never met you physically but I have admired you all of my life. You were a great and powerful man with a heart of gold. You inspired nations of people to stand for what was right. How you must have felt when you were imprisoned all those years? How many tears did you shed? Your walk of life was emblazoned with an amazing light and your words pierced the heart of your oppressors. When I received the news of your passing, my soul cried because one of our pioneers, one of our fathers had passed on. But, oh, what a gift you were to us all. I have been moved to my core from your struggles and you made me want to do better. You gave us all hope that things can change--one person can truly make a difference. Nelson, I love you father. I hope to inspire change in the way you have. You have left an indellible mark on this world and will forever live on in us. I pray that we do not disappoint you, that our ways are not offensive. Some of us do care about the plight and condition of our people. Some of us still fight. We are here dear Nelson, we are here...

Peace & Blessings,

Tuesday, December 3, 2013


Life’s inconveniences can cause a person to be become more humble and grateful for each and every blessing. How often do you go about your day, not considering how you would function without your sight, a home, a reliable means of transportation, without food? Nine times out of ten, we get out of bed, begin our day, go to work, eat dinner, etc, all without thinking about how we would function without. I saw a blind gentlemen on the bus yesterday. I thought to myself, how must he feel to not be able to see where is going, to see people, places, to function each day without his sight. I did not feel pity, I more or less felt disappointment in myself because I often focus on things that are not anywhere s necessary as my sight. So what I have to get up a little earlier to get to work! So what I cannot afford to eat out everyday! What would I do without my sight, my hearing, my intellectual abilities, my health? I am challenging myself to not only be more grateful, but to bite my tongue if I even think about complaining. Gratefulness is a choice. If we were to take time to list all the blessings that we have, it is my belief that we wouldn’t be able to. We do not recognize what we have until we no longer have  or its in jeopardy. Challenge yourself to meditate on your blessings—it will improve your day and change your attitude.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Endangered Species

With the approaching holiday, I cannot help but think of the plight of our community. Young, black men are dying everyday, many times by the hand of other young, black men. What is the solution? We need to rebuild our community but first we need to change our mindset. Our community has an enslaved mentality and for those of us who have freed our minds, we are largely outnumbered. We are jealous of each others growth and success.We "hate" on one another. But why? You are my brother--aren't I supposed to love you? We should be proud for each other and our accomplishments. We struggle against a system that was designed for individuals who do not look like us. We struggle against injustice. Did we not forget our past? We were once property, with absolutely no rights. Many of us do not know from whence we came. Your ancestors are not from Brooklyn, NY! Where is our pride? Where is the love? What happened to black power? So, when you are sitting at your table enjoying your meal, I want you to think about all these brothers we have lost. They will never again be able to physically enjoy the company of family again. They will never share good times with family again. They are gone from this life. They have transitioned without choice. Life is good--I just wish our brothers knew that.. RIP to all my brothers that lost their life to violence. I would name a few but the list is too long and to painful. But know this-you are not forgotten and I will continue to fight for you, this is my way to honor your memory. One Love!

Peace & Blessings,

Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Season of Love

It seems that so many people that I know are getting married or are planning on getting married. It is so sweet. The blushing bride, the proud and nervous groom, the décor, the preparation, the family and friends; all serve as adornment for the honored event. But, outside of the good feelings I have towards them and their future plans, there is sense of pride and hope. It takes a radical individual to dedicate themselves to another through marriage. The vows in essence say that you are willing to stay and fight with and for that person, through sickness, poverty,etc. I am, at heart, a hopeless romantic. These wedding pictures I see each day are full of joy, hope, and love. I am blessed to be able to see so many lovely people join with another. It is a sacred thing that has to be cultivated, cherished, and protected. The end of a marriage can be devastating. Honestly, even though I am a divorcee, I still have nothing but positive energy in regards to marriage. It is a beautiful thing. It gives me hope that all is not lost. True love and devotion still exists. I would just like to offer a tidbit of advice from my personal experience. Make sure that you share in the same vision and know that one person cannot make a marriage--it takes both individuals. On that note, I look forward to seeing more pictures and I wouldn't mind being invited to a few! May  these couples be blessed in their new union with joy, peace, and eternal happiness.

Peace & Blessings,


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Keep Focused, Be Clear

Life is a very complex thing.It is filled with ups, downs, triumphs, failures, wins, losses, etc. But, how can we as individuals be "winners" consistently. What defines a winner or a victor in life? Is it the amount of wealth he accumulates, is it that he worked hard for his family, is it because she gave everything she had to be a good person? One thing I have learned is that you are what you think you are. How is that you may ask? Well, we have the ability to affect our life, in either a positive or negative way. What you dwell on and are consumed with on a emotional and in your psyche will produce a physical manifestation. We must be mindful of how we think of ourselves, what we concentrate on , and how we see our future. If you want to overcome poverty, stop saying you are broke and never have anything. If you want a family, stop saying "I cannot have children". We must focus on our thoughts, be careful of our thoughts, and have faith that our desires will manifest if we believe. The universe is programmed to react to the impules of our thoughts and demonstrate in a tangible, physical way. All is never lost, unless you believe it. A friend used to say "If you speak defeat, you are already beaten." Remember this and apply the principle. Dedicate yourself to improving your circumstances and on becoming that which you were created to become. Your life will change! Be consistent. You can do this! You can be! So, until the next time....

Peace & Blessings,

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Turkey Day is on Deck!

Thanksgiving is around the corner and I have to say I am super excited! It has always been one of my most favorite holidays not because of the food but because of the family time. When I was growing up, my family used to have large gatherings at Thanksgiving. We would sit around and joke, listen to stories from the elders, eat, and just generally enjoy one another's company. I miss those days! One of my favorite people was my Uncle Otho Jr. He was the coolest cat around! He always wore a brim or one of the hats like Kangaroo Jack, Stetsons, cologne, and ride around in his old-school Chevrolet convertible with the white wall tires! The man had swagger that was just genuine and I loved to ride in the convertible with him and listen to his tapes which included the O'Jays, Al Green, Muddy Waters, among others. It is memories such as this that make me strive for my children to truly understand and enjoy Thanksgiving and their family. It is a requirement for us to be together on the holidays, no matter what. One of my children is almost grown, however, he knows the holidays are a must-attend event. And I have made a few traditions of my own that may sound familiar to you--we watch football, I only make my famous dressing twice a year (Thanksgiving and Christmas), we visit with family, and we chill. So, this year, we will do what we do; cook, eat, reminisce, and enjoy each other, because family is the greatest gift of all!

Peace & Blessings,

Saturday, November 9, 2013

The Importance of Honesty

Honesty according to Webster's dictionary has been defined as "the quality of being fair and truthful : the quality of being honest:. It has been my experience that people often view honesty as being relative to both who they are dealing with and the situation. "Little white lies", although often not life-altering, are still lies. Who enjoys being lied to? It is hard to say, but we do. When someone could tell us the 100% truth, but they spare our feelings, do we not enjoy the beautiful lie? When I had my children, I struggled with the feeling of despair of not having the body I once had. My family would tell me "Andréa, you look just fine" when I knew I looked a mess. I would starve myself and work out tirelessly to fit the misguided lie of not looking the part of a woman who had just given birth to an 8 pound baby. As I have matured, I have had experiences where lies have cut me so deeply that I did not know if I could go on. I had some of the people closest to me betray me. I have had people around me know the reality of what was going on but not even have the decency to tell me. The truth of the situation has brought me to a place of distrust and an inability to believe people 100%. It is sad really, living with the thought that no one will tell me the whole truth. And I still do not see myself as a victim. This is no pity party. I am simply shedding some light on this issue. It was said that the lie was told "to save me from hurt". But, in the end, it was a counterproductive and cowardice move. How could you possibly love me like you claimed and lie to me so easily? And how could you continue to lie for so long? No I am not 100% honest at all times-I do not think anyone is. But, when telling a lie could potentially change the course of someone's life--I am inclined to tell the truth, no matter how difficult and I would hope someone would treat me the same way. I have an uncanny ability of deduction of situation. I will analyze a situation and come to know how things occurred. I should have been a detective. There have been things that have happened that I figured out through my ability to calculate and put "2 & 2 together". It is because of this ability that I have found out so much about people in general. This has been a source of confusion as well as pain. One thing I have come to find is that with time, pain is not as heart wrenching and unbearable as it was when it initially occurs. I liken the experience of this type of pain to a cut, at first the cut burns and aches, after a week or two, the sting begins to dull. It is better to hurt a little now, than be ripped to shreds later. Be real. Be honest. Show empathy. What if it were you?

Peace & Blessings,

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Love in the City

There are times that I get what some may describe as stir crazy and I have to get out of the house. I decided to travel to uptown Charlotte yesterday and go sight seeing. As I walked down Trade Street, I turned a corner and found myself at a wedding. It was a small wedding, with very few invited guests and it was not intimate, being held in the middle of the city. But, the bride and groom seemed to be so enthralled in each other that the setting was intimate to them. There was a street performer playing the most beautiful music on the trumpet during the ceremony. I felt an overwhelming sense of pleasure in watching this brand new couple. They had on the traditional wedding attire but as I spied the whole situation, it occurred to me that they are anything but traditional. Her hair was a shocking color of red, his jet black and his ears were adorned with large lobe earrings. They both had tattoos everywhere and their guests, though dressed up, were very much rocker chic in their appearance. However, it was not their appearance or the setting that made them radical. It is the act that performed that makes them radical. To marry someone requires the sacrifice of self- to go from "I" to "us". It is the single most radical act that one can do of their own free will. To vow to love someone for the rest of your life, to love them when they are sick, poor, and worse. I am a hopeless romantic at heart and so want to have someone to love in this way and for that someone to love me back. A Facebook friend asked the question if this type of love still exists and I must say it does. Although marriages fail and the media highlights scandals within these marriages, people continue to say "I do" . These two love birds warmed my heart as he carried her across College Avenue, a symbolic paved threshold. Love still exists.

Peace & Blessings,

Friday, October 25, 2013


Throughout my life, I have been called a lot of things; girl, smart, black, thick, sweet, Mommy, friend, sis, "A"; the list could go on and on. However, I have been thinking lately what do I call myself. When you look in  the mirror, who do you really see? Is the reflection all you imagined it would be? I think back on times in my life when I hated the person looking back at me. She was never good enough, she was never pretty enough, she was never enough. I used to question my mom, asking if I was adopted. I have never fit quite in. I never was a member of any clique. I would hang with the nerds and in the same day be with the thugs. I am still that way. I speak to everyone and can relate to almost anyone. I have an amazing ability to relate to a person on their individual level. I am somewhat of an enigma, even to those who have known me all my natural life. One of my sisters once said "Andre'a can talk all day and never really say anything" and she was right. I have a natural ability to hold secrets and information close to my chest. But, again who am I?
I have come to the conclusion that I am who I want to be at any given time. I am Mommy to my beautiful children, a comedianne to those who need a laugh. I am daughter to my mom. I am sister to Teliska, Tasha, Derik, and Wayne, as well as my other siblings. I am Bae to Jamala. I am Babygirl to my Poppy. I am "cuz" to Pep. I am friend to my girls (and dudes). I am woman to the world. I am a fighter to the struggles to this life. I am a survivor to the trials and tribulations. I am a citizen in this world in which we live. I am. I am. I just am.

Peace & Blessings,


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Family- Complex but Necessary

The word family according to Dictionary.com is defined as :
a. basic social unit consisting of parents and their children, considered as a group, whether dwelling together or not: the traditional family.
b. a social unit consisting of one or more adults together with the children they care for: a single-parent family. 
the children of one person or one couple collectively:
the spouse and children of one person 
any group of persons closely related by blood, as parents, children, uncles, aunts, and cousins: to marry into a socially prominent family.
all those persons considered as descendants of a common progenitor.
I have come to find that family is defined by more than DNA. Family consists of those individuals in which we are connected on a deeper level. Some of my dearest friends have been "adopted" into my family. We defend one another, we challenge one another, we fellowship, we show concern, we are family. This past weekend, I spent some time talking to my mother. Our relationship is one that has often been strained due to circumstances and situations, often difficult, in our lives. Her birthday was Saturday and as I sat there talking, I came to the realization of how life comes full circle. The woman I saw before me had aged so much, as have I. She is a grandmother. She is no longer 30-something, not even 40-something. Where has the time gone? I am now 32 years old. I realize that my time with her is slipping away. My children are growing up. I looked at my teenaged son and realized he is almost a man. Boo-Boo is on the brink of manhood. We must make the best use of our time here on this earth. Love your family, love them hard. Some members of my family can get on my nerves, even the ones that have been "adopted" however, I need them. When the world is not so nice, and stress robs me of sleep, I can count on one of my loved ones to shake me back into reality and help me realize that everything will be all right- we just have to endure. I am personally going to hold myself more accountable for my familial relationships. Things happen, people screw up-deal with it. No one is perfect, not even me. We should not punish our family for their faults. We should confront the issue and move forward. No progression can occur without sacrifice.  Family is complex but they are necessary.
Peace & Blessings,

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Social Media-Friend or Foe?

I am posting this in response to a situation that occurred in my life that caused confusion and hurt. As I perused a loved one's page, I happened upon some pictures of him with an ex. The pictures were not "explicit" but it was a reminder of how cruel people can be on social media. They have knowledge of people's situations, relationships, etc. but they intentionally post things to cast doubt or "stir the pot" as my Grandma Lillie would say. Yes, the picture was old however, it ended up being plastered on the homepage of said loved one which to other people's eyes, gave the appearance that they are still a "couple". It is especially disheartening when no correction is applied.  It is a sad day when you receive satisfaction in attempting to bring misery to others. Ten years ago "Twitter wars" and "Facebook bashing" did not exist. When we had issues, we handled them face to face. People have begun to live on social media and instead of dealing with their issues up close and personal, they prefer to air their dirty laundry over the internet. Passive aggressive acts such as posting that picture is in my opinion idiotic and infantile. The power of social media is one that is not easily harnessed and if it was not for the positives (advertising, maintaining friendships long distance, seeing my family that live far away such as my nephew in Alaska) I would delete my accounts. People do not realize the impact of their social media presence and as a result they do things that are just downright ignorant. We must all learn to behave more responsibly. Individual situations change, lives change, life partners change--sometimes. The past should be kept in the past, not copied to a wall in such a blazon way. Back in the day, I would straight up act ignorant when I felt disrespected. But, I am a grown woman now so I will remain a lady. I choose to instead chronicle my opinions for others to read or hear. Some may say that I am a hypocrite because I share personal experiences on my blog and post to social media. However, I disagree. I explicitly stated in my first post that my blog is just that -my blog. It is an outlet for me to say what I feel and think. No one has to go to the link if they don't want to. However, I appreciate all those that do read and do so with an open mind and heart. With that being said, let me end with a quote by Robert Frost

"In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on."
Peace & Blessings,

Monday, October 14, 2013

Rainy Monday

The weather outside is rainy and gloomy. It reminds me of how I have felt within myself for the past few days. I recieved some bad news Friday, which increased my anxiety and my sense of helplessness. What next? How much do I have to lose before I begin to win again? Only He knows. I have overwhelming feelings of dread sometimes, to the point that I cannot seem to form words and have a decent conversation with others. But, instinctively, my sense of drive takes over and it is all consuming. My will alone drives me on and does not allow me to throw in the proverbial towel. At times when I have said "I give up", she (will) says "No you don't". There have been times I have rationalized not pursuing greatness and it is at those times that my will kicks into overdrive and I am inspired to try again. Do not assume I am depressed or suicidal. This is not a pity party or a cry for help. It is my own expression of my humanity. Trials and tribulations can plaque your life and rip your still beating heart from your chest. I have experienced times of extreme pain to the point I felt I died such as losing a brother and father within two weeks of each other, or being abused to the point of death. I have experienced times of immense joy such as the birth of my six amazing children and graduating with honors from college. "Where there is life, there is hope." I feel like my life is a melodrama, filled with unpleasant events, but I still believe there is a great chance of improvement. There are still times of peace and intense love--when I hold my baby boy and listen to his heart beat and see him smile at me, or when my love holds me close and says "I love you little girl", those are the best times. I am the eternal optimist. I thrive off the belief that things will get better. There are seasons in our lifes and lessons to be learned. I feel as if my life journey has taken me down these hard paths in order to help someone else along and to let them know that they can make it. Life is not perfect. But, life is still good-no matter what, life is good.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Season Is Changing and So Am I

I thoroughly enjoy when the weather begins to cool off and winter begins to beckon. It may be my imagination but I feel I have more clarity in the brisk mornings of fall and winter than in the stagnation of summer and the pollen-laden spring. I will be focusing on transforming my life in the remaining months of 2013. Materialism and procrastination have become old associates and have been replaced by self-reflection and minimalism. I can see things more clearly now. We waste so much time and energy on things that are essentially insignificant. I am getting older and with that comes the realization of how quickly time passes as well as our lives. I am choosing to stretch myself beyond what I believed to be my level of potential. I am challenging myself to be a better Andre' a. It is not without pain and at times doing so much of reflection brings a feeling of regret. I often think back on the missed opportunities, the wasted time, the self abuse that I have willingly participated in so long. However, we learn life lessons in reverse; we cannot learn unless we navigate through a given situation. I have intentionally purposed to take a long look at myself in the mirror. At times I do not like what I see but mostly I do. I am still living, I am still breathing, I am still here. And as long as I am here, I have another opportunity to improve and to become who I was destined to be, as do you. Time out for dreams unfilled and stagnation. Progression and change have become my closest comrades. As the great Audre Lorde once said "I am deliberate and afraid of nothing." My choices at this time in my life are deliberate and I do not live in fear anymore. I am living.

Peace & Blessings,

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Disturbing to the Soul

Normally my blog topics are upbeat, informative, reflective, even inspirational but, I do not believe in wearing rose-colored glasses. Every now and then, some news story disturbs me so much that I must vent about it so here goes. I just read an article about the daycare worker who filmed herself raping a one-year old baby. Heather Koon is charged with 2 counts of rape and even had the audacity to film herself in a video performing one act. This is one of the most despicable cases I have ever heard of. What in the world is going on? What type of monster can do such a thing and what would possess her to? I have six children whom I adore with my entire being. I can not imagine the anguish that these parents must feel. You entrust your children with the daycare workers and to find out that this type of thing has happened is heartbreaking. I first ran across the story on Facebook but later read the article in the Huffington Post. It is in time like these that I believe we should pray and seek God's face ever the more. You may not believe in Him but in this world of uncertain and dangerous times, we must lean not to our own understanding. It is in Him that we will find rest and protection. I pray for those families affected. I pray for the victims. I pray for the communities. I pray. I pray. You may not believe, but I know, prayer changes things.

Peace & Blessings,

Heather Coon article

Friday, October 4, 2013

From the Mind of Andre'a : Legal Monopoly?

From the Mind of Andre'a : Legal Monopoly?: It is with great frustration that I pen this post. How is it that power companies can charge exorbitant fees that average people can barely ...

Legal Monopoly?

It is with great frustration that I pen this post. How is it that power companies can charge exorbitant fees that average people can barely pay and be the only game in town without any interference from the government and no other choice than to use their services or go without electricity? I am overly aggravated with the system and the way that this company (or companies) are allowed to charge such fees with little or no explanation. I personally have never had an electric bill below $100. Payment arrangements are laughable and attempting to find resolution to discrepancies is a waste of time. Please forgive my ranting and raving but, it is not fair to the consumer to be charged such high fees with such low usage. And to add insult to injury, no one in the customer service department can provide me with one good reason as to why my bill is so extremely high. One should never shudder when seeing particular pieces of mail in the mailbox, but every month that bill comes, I only can feel dread. Please Mr. Electric have a heart, my purse and my nerves would surely thank you.

Peace & Blessings,

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Unexpected Surprises

Life, as you know,is a peculiar thing. There are times of intense pleasure, intense pain, euphoria, despair, even mundane moments in which nothing of any particular excitement is occuring. I have come to find pleasure in the simplicities of life. There is beauty in the most unlikely places: sky at sunset, the twinkle in a child's eye, the warmth of an embrace. Poetry, music, dance, theater, conversation, literature are all things that are able to penetrate and stimulate my mind, body, and spirit.
As those close to me know, I love to exercise. I love to run or walk, listen to my music, and work on being a better me. The crispness (or stagnation in summer) of the air, the wind through my locs, the feeling of the concrete beneath my running shoes--there is nothing quite like it. It is during these times of solitude, I am able to center my thoughts and further analyze the richness of life.
There are people that will enrich your life if you will open your mind and allow the transfer. I have come to understand that people are much more than meets the eye and even more than popular opinion. The old adage "never judge a book by its cover" is so surprisingly true. And even though it is very human to prejudge, let us free ourselves from the prison of pre-belief and pre-judgment. Life is good and although our world is wrought with violence, wars, and ugliness--life still is good. I believe that we are all good, at our core, though our actions may say otherwise. Love one another, be happy, enjoy life. Time passes so quickly, be fulfilled in the one you have.

Peace & Blessings,

Friday, September 27, 2013

From a Bird's Eye View

I have begun to notice that I am changing and have changed dramatically over the past few years. I see the world so differently. The world is such a different place and it is easy to become overwhelmed with the constant stimulation provided to use through smartphones, television, internet, etc. Contrary to many people's beliefs, I am a very introspective and at times, introverted individual. I am much more aware of how vast the world is but at the same time, how interconnected we all are. I remember a childhood friend attempting to explain to me that we are all only six degrees separated from one another and I am beginning to believe it to an extent. We are share a familial spirit through basic humanity. We all hunger, we all thirst, we all need shelter, food, clothing,love. We are all walking a path. Everyone's path is different and there are many intersections, crosswalks, and speed bumps along the way. My dear grandmother used to say "Everyone has to play the cards they are dealt". But, isn't it better if we have a partner to help? I have come to the realization that my presence and my life do matter to others and my activities, though small to me, are significant to others. Let us all be more mindful. Everyday you wake up, you have purpose. You are a part, no matter your station in this life--you are a part.

Peace & Blessings,

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

What to do When You've Done All You Can

This life, as beautiful as it is, is full of trials and tests. Things will assumedly be good and then all of a sudden, Wham! You are in a car accident, you get laid off, your parents become sick. How do you continue to be happy when dread comes knocking on  the door? I tell you what I do--I keep moving! I love the movie "Meet the Robinsons". In the movie, Mr. Robinson had a motto "Keep moving forward." He didn't allow a defeating attitude to consume him or to stop him from pursuing his dreams. If an invention didn't work, he kept working on it until he perfected it. In life, we will make mistakes, it is human nature. However, we must learn from our mistakes and not let what we did dictate who we are. Depression can settle in rapidly if given the right circumstances. We must not live in the past with the attitude of "What if" or "If only". We must resolve to have an attitude of "The next time" and "What I learned is". Pass on your experience and your wisdom to the up-and-coming generation-they will appreciate the lessons later on trust me. We aren't born with the foreknowledge of how to navigate this life, we must learn in reverse. No matter how cloudy it is, the sun is still shining. Keep moving forward!!!

Peace and Blessings!

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Friday, September 20, 2013

Friday, Friday, So Glad to See You!

This week I have been super busy and I am so glad to see today. Friday is for many the start of the weekend, but for me it is time for family. I thoroughly enjoy seeing my children relax after a hard week at school, my man do his thing in the kitchen (he is a chef), and to just enjoy the simplicities of life. Life is so short, much shorter than we think. We need to learn to cherish the moments and create experiences, not just memories. I want to live a life of no regrets. If I live to be an old lady, I do not want to reminisce about what I could have done, but rather about the time when I did. So, live each day like it's your last because it might be. Love truly and love hard, you never know when it might be the last time you see that person. Savor family time, kids grow up really rapidly and parents age even quicker. Learn new things, meet new people, eat different foods, smell the roses. Live.

Peace and Blessing!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Are Black Men Under Attack?

The tragic shooting of Jonathan Ferrell in East Charlotte this week is a story that is becoming all too familiar on the news and very disheartening to our communities. I have four sons and I am very fearful for them as they grow. Society views them as a threat, a menace, a thug. Jonathan Ferrell was seeking help and the ones that should have helped him, killed him. What in the world is going on? So many black men have been killed in this way and it is painful to watch. On the same news as this story, comes a story of another black man, Aaron Alexis,  this one the facilitator of violence, killing 13 people including himself and injuring ten. People that know him indicated they would have never thought he could or would do such a thing. But, he did. Is this an expression of his hatred of America and the injustices that plaque us or was this simply an act of a man who was evil and raged against the innocent? I personally do not know either of them but, I will say that if you continue to call a person a certain thing and treat them as such, eventually, that individual will become what you call him. Let us begin to call each other brother, sister, friend, great, loving, beautiful, peaceful, all the things we need in our world, because it is getting dark my dear brothers and sisters. It is getting dark.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Life of a Dreadhead

I am soon coming upon my loc anniversary. It will be two years in November that I embarked on this journey and 3 years in December that I dropped my "creamy crack" habit. I do not regret going natural but at times my hair does not do what I want and I get frustrated. I work in a corporate environment and I try to look my best each day but my hair acts up at times. Some of my locs are thin, some thicker, some longer, some shorter, but they all work together to give me what I feel is a pretty decent looking set of locs. I do love them but they are like a wayward child, not behaving as you have trained them. I have no intentions on cutting them off or going back to relaxers. They have grown to become a part of my identity. Other women have complimented me on them which is flattering and my man LOVES them! So, I will continue to let them live and continue on my journey. I love being a dreadhead!!

Peace and Blessings!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Friday the 13th- A Family's Superstition

Here it is Friday the 13th, a dreaded day of bad luck for some, but for me, it's just a day. I grew up in a somewhat superstitious family; a mother who would (and still won't) leave the house on Friday the 13th. The house could catch on fire and I would have to physically force her out! I am no fan of horror movies and the Friday the 13th movies were the worse! However, I have experienced some "good" luck on Friday the 13th, one experience in particular is getting my drivers license on Friday, August 13, 1999. I am no believer in luck but karma is the same belief as reaping what you sow, so I do believe in it. Friday the 13th is just another day, plain and simple. Now, let me go on about my day.

Peace and Blessings!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Who Am I?

Who am I? Isn't this a question most of us have asked? I am still learning who I am day by day. Many of us equate our jobs to who we are but that is more of what you are. I am a mother first and foremost of six amazing children. I am a student (completing my MBA as we speak). I am a daughter, sister, friend, advisor, girlfriend, lover, the list can go on and on. But, what I have learned about myself is that complacency is not a state of mind that I attest to . I have to move, I have to learn, I have to grow. This blog will be a reflection of my journey through this maze called life. I will share my opinions on issues that I am passionate about, I will vent, I will express myself, I will educate, I will learn. So, welcome to the mind of Andre'a-get ready for an awesome journey.

Syria-What To Do?

My mind is reeling over the idea of America attacking Syria. I love President Obama, don't get me wrong, but I do not think that this is a good idea. Many of us have family over in Iraq and Afghanistan and with President Assad making the threats he's making, our government would be well served to take heed. More lives will be lost. I do empathize with the innocents, those caught in a battle that was not theirs to begin with, but America is not and should not attempt to police the world. What is the solution? I honestly do not know. I would never want a position such as president when the world is expecting me to be a savior. I pray for those who suffer and I pray for those in authority. What a job? I am praying for resolution. Maybe Assad will contract ebola and cease to exist. Oh well, so much for wishful thinking.