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Bold, Brown, & Beautiful

"She's cute for a dark skinned girl."  "Stop acting light skinned."




We've heard all these phrases. Some of us even say these phrases. But under the surface what do they mean to us? The other day I walked by a young girl with a cute puffball ponytail. She complimented me on my hair and I smiled, exchanging compliments with her. As I kept walking I started to wonder if she liked my hair because it was long and straight or if she really, at about 8 or 9, liked my teased mane. It may sound conceited but I really worry about our female youth. I automatically thought about the infamous Oprah baby doll episode. Then I thought about Chris Rock's 'Good Hair' documentary. One thought led to another and I wanted to hug every little brown girl I saw because the media pushes so much on them I just want to protect them. But then I thought about it and in this situation you sort of have to work from the top to the bottom because if we're the little brown la…

Thanks.

At this point in life I have so much I could complain about. School. Work. Family. Love. You name it, I can complain about it. But I won't! Because the flip side of these possible complaints is that for every single one, I can find more than one thing to be thankful for. We ask for so much. I ask for more freelance gigs, I ask God to wake my Adam, I ask God to send me someone to pay my tuition, but I realized I don't need more things to thank him for I need to be more thankful. When I figured this out everything around me began to make more sense. So. Today I wasn't in the best of moods and I felt like my patience was being tried but instead of lashing out I looked up because there's so much to be thankful for I won't waste a second pondering what ifs and why nots, instead I'll be thankful for what I do have, because I know there's more where that came from.
Ten Things I'm Thankful For

1. God. The power of prayer. The FAITH I have in his actions. 
2. F…

press PLAY.

Music is my boyfriend. When I'm down and out, it makes me smile! It's the perfect balance of venting, praying, and listening to some good music that keeps me afloat. I was texting my silly goose Cali and I thought about how much music can really help you through a situation. The Bible places a huge emphasis on hope, faith and love so I got to thinking about a couple of my go to songs to help me out when I've lost hope, I'm lacking faith and in need of love. Don't get me wrong, prayer, personal time, venting, and all that are good modes of restoration but what's life without a soundtrack??

1. HOPE India.Arie, There's Hope India.Arie said it well:  "it doesn't cost a thing to smile, you don't have to pay to laugh, you better thank God for that..." "that's when I learned a lesson, it's all about your perspective..." I remember a time that I felt down and out and I almost CRIED listening to these lyrics. It IS all about perspect…

Back to Your Regularly Scheduled Programming...

Hey guys! SO, I think I've finally got my mojo back! Lately I've let life get me down and I've been in this FUNK. I stink you guys! But I'm pushing forward and I SEE THE LIGHT! *pause for dramatic 'epiphany' music*
In light of everything that has happened I think my withdrawal is acceptable however, from a business standpoint, it's NOT acceptable. I'm not beating myself up but I am pushing myself forward. HARD.


Last week I had the wonderful pleasure of attending Kitty Bradshaw's 5th Blogiversary and there I won a 10 Day GM car rental to be used for a future car ride. So many topics in my head, so many blogger meet ups and events on my schedule. It took me a while but I'm coming out of this funk and I'm SO thankful. Sometimes you just have to sit and be. I sat. I'm up now. Hey ya'll hey!!!!


@ms_shady (instagram/twitter) E: shadesofmarketing@me.com 

Dear Diary...

Dear Diary,

So. Clearly I haven't posted anything in about two weeks. I blame this little fact on LIFE. Well, actually, I would LIKE to blame life but I think I will blame REALITY instead. Life goes on around me and mentally I sometimes shut down. Luckily for me, when it comes to work I move in autopilot so I don't have to be fully present mentally to get the job done physically. 
Well. At least that's what I thought. These past two weeks that I haven't written I lost two people very close to me. One I grew with for almost a decade and one I've watched grow. One whom I share a bloodline with and another who is family but doesn't share a drop of blood with me. I pushed myself to keep going because I know life will keep going around me and I fear I'll get left behind. I force myself to bury my emotions because I don't want to appear broken, although if anything were to break me this would be it. I force myself to not only stand up straight and shake it off,…

numb. or not.

TheFreeDictionary.com defines 'numb' as: "emotionally unresponsive." 
I thought I was numb but I'm actually the complete opposite of that. I've felt every emotion imaginable in the past 24 hours. Denial, frustration, anger, confusion, pain. I've laughed, cried, screamed. I took a walk. I took a nap. I ignored some calls. I answered some texts. I think I'm still in some weird, warped form of denial. The loss of a loved one is insane. It's motions you go through and emotions you're absorbed in. And it never gets easier. In fact, I feel like as you get older and as more people begin to return home way too soon it's like, "oh no, not another funeral!"
When I was younger I wasn't where I am religiously or mentally. I didn't fully understand the power of having your whole life ahead of you and making every moment count. I surely didn't understand that you can't question His timing. You rely on it daily so to question it…

An Open Letter to Wendy Davis

An Open Letter To Wendy Davis:

THANK YOU. You are an off screen gladiator in a suit. A teenage mother who
graduated from Harvard Law, with HONORS, is a strong woman in general but you went above and beyond, literally standing for what you believe in, and for that I am thankful. I am not a Texas resident. I am not even a fan of Texas legislation. I am also not a fan of the staggering abortion rate in Texas. HOWEVER, I am a WOMAN and I firmly believe in my right to choose. For every one of us that stands strong in support with you there is someone who stands in opposition. There are naysayers who believe your thoughts and opinions are far from genuine and your political outreach is a ploy to increase your political reach.

We live in a country where slavery was once the norm, women are currently underpaid in comparison to their male counterparts and same sex marriage is frowned upon and ruled against. America is not the 'land of the free' it is a stomping ground for big governme…

www.ihatemypublicist.com is LIVE!

This weekend I was privileged to attend Blogging While Brown in New York City. A conference where brown ladies and gents from all cities and states came together for the love of blogging. I took away a lot of gems from this conference but what's most important is the art of unity and coming together to support each other. Your network is truly your net worth so I encourage you all to step out of your element, make at least one new contact a day, support anyone doing something you believe in, and encourage success in those around you. 
With that being said today is a special day for Ms Brittnee Boone. I met her the first day of the conference and I stopped to say hello because I noticed her shoes. Her website is www.ihatemypublicist.com and she contributes her posts to various other local blogs/websites. Check out her story below and be sure to visit her website, bookmark it, subscribe, follow her on Twitter/Instagram for the latest celebrity news straight to your timeline.
Twitte…

I'm Just Saying...

So. The Trayvon Martin case is underway. If you're unfamiliar please, move. Folk were outraged at some of the evidence presented thus far, and for a good reason; photos of Martin's dead body at the crime scene was plastered on a projector screen as his parents looked away. Today's testimonies weren't any less demoralizing. Rachel Jeantel took the stand (again). The young woman who was on the phone with Trayvon during his final moments was picked to pieces. Her enunciation was attacked, opening a strong debate between whether she told detectives she "could" or "couldn't" hear some of Martin's last words. We learned of her inability to read cursive handwriting, and we saw her become obviously frustrated. This is all understandable. She's a working class teenage girl. I don't know of her upbringing but I also don't understand why it's important. No sooner than she was sworn in did Twitter attack. Excuse my ratch but, I'm no…

What's Your Status?

Today is National HIV Testing Day. Tests are FREE and CONFIDENTIAL! You shouldn't need a day to encourage you to #KnowYourStatus but TODAY is the DAY. As an incentive some testing centers even raffle off prizes. I think it's DISGUSTING if you're sexually active, have been or plan to be, and you need an INCENTIVE to push you to protect your health and the health of those around you. But. I'm just a basic blogger. My opinion doesn't matter. What does matter however are the FACTS. Maybe you'd prefer pictures over words? I highlighted what I think is most important below. Straight from the CDC. Don't believe me? Click the link: http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/risk/racialEthnic/aa/facts/index.html
Want to get tested? Click here: http://m.hivtest.cdc.gov/ plug in your zip code &find the testing center near you!





A Message From Our Sponsors...

#BWBNYC was an amazing experience!  I've been blogging for about three years so I don't consider myself a beginner but I'm definitely not a veteran. That said, for beginning bloggers and even vets I would HIGHLY recommend this conference because there is something for everyone. I'll get into the speakers and panels in my following posts but first I'd like to show appreciation to the sponsors I enjoyed the most. This is a visual post. Be happy. I have lots to say in the following days, rest your eyes.
DISCLAIMER: All the sponsors were AMAZING but I interacted with some more than others. These are exclusively my thoughts. And pictures ;)

Colgate Optic White Colgate sponsored our opening party.  They provided us with a 'swag bag' of oral hygiene products and a specialty cocktail, 'Optic White'



TV Land's The Soul Man
Sponsored our Saturday Breakfast  (stay tuned for my post on their panel!)


Beautiful Textures #LovinMyTextures I won a year's supply of Be…

#BWBNYC: 15 Panels in 15 Days!

Hey guys! Blogging While Brown New York City (#BWBNYC) is over but all the tips and info are still FRESH on my mind! I thank Gina for allowing me to be part of the team and I'm SO glad I attended. I met some wonderful people from the talented Karen Civil to the beginning bloggers living in my own city. Gina made sure we stayed on schedule and all the panelists were extremely approachable for questions and pictures. The main thing I took away from this weekend is to be authentic. I am my biggest asset. So I must be the best me that I can be. Which shouldn't be hard because I'm the only me there is!



In staying true to myself I've decided, instead of condensing all this info, I'd much rather touch specifically on what I took away. I sat through fifteen panels so over the next fifteen days I'll be sharing my thoughts and opinions on each individual session. I learned so much from this conference but because you guys weren't there next to me, simply feeding you…

ANTICIPATION! #BWBNYC

I'm writing this from the Megabus headed to New York. If you know me you know that's pretty normal. I'm the Media Manager at a Home Decor firm in Gramercy Park so I'm either in NY or in Philly which means being on the Megabus going in any direction is the norm. However! Today is different. Tomorrow kicks off Blogging While Brown 2013 ;)



I'm the Facebook Team Lead which, simply put, means I handled Facebook promotion leading up to the conference. This means I know all about the schedule, speakers, sponsors and more. Which grants me the right to be EXTRA excited! A few bloggers I met in Atlanta at the Our Strong Conference* will be in NYC and all conference participants are available via Twitter and Facebook. This means reunions and new beginnings!



I can't even begin to explain how READY I am. Below is only a GLIMPSE of the schedule but #BWBNYC's amazing co-founder Gina McCauley secured some dope speakers and sponsors! Can you understand my anticipati…

TRUE LIFE: I'M A CONTROL FREAK

Anyone who knows me knows I'm a planner. That's what I do. I'm anal. I can't help it. I'm so anal that at times I even get frustrated with God because I can't figure out why my life doesn't go according to my plan. If you're the even the least bit religious I know you're shaking your head at me, insisting I have no plan, it all belongs to Him. I don't disagree but I honestly can't help it. I imagine I was a very detail oriented child. Playing house and making grocery lists while the other children actually played with the dolls.


I say this to say that recently I've decided to challenge myself to sit back and relax. I joined a group called Pinky Promise (another post for another time) and our June challenge is to be more obedient to God's timing. This applies mainly to my confusion about love, employment and education. But I've also applied it to my daily life. I'm the least punctual person ever but I hate being late to places…

Happy Father's Day

My family is from Petersburg, VA and I spent a lot of my childhood down there. My great grandparents were the best. My great grandfather recently passed away but while he was here he and my great grandmother spoiled me and my siblings just as they spoiled my Dad and his. When my grandmother (Dad's Mom) was a teen she met my Grandfather, one thing led to another and BOOM, my Dad was born. Their relationship was rocky and abusive causing my grandmother to come up north where my aunts were already living.  My grandmother cut off contact with my grandfather so my dad was raised in a single parent household with my Pop and great uncles being a huge influence in his life. But from the way the story is told it seems like there was always a void. My dad stayed in and out of trouble, from Philly to VA, and I never asked him what he was running from or to but I kind of have an idea.            Fast forward to now my dad has met my mom and he's still in and out of jail, minima…

FAILURE

I am SLACKING! I haven't uploaded a post in what seems like FOREVER! Caught up in Blogging While Brown prep, Lazy Susan paperwork, revamping iSocialite and a million other obligations. HOWEVER, that's no excuse. This is my baby. My personal space that I've decided to share with you guys so I need to get it together. I know, I said that last month, but we all have our moments. In the meantime, visit www.iSoicaliteMedia.com to stay up to date on the latest entertainment news ;)

Well, Hello There ;)

I have to be honest with you guys. Well, I have to be honest with myself, you guys, not so much. But. Anyways. I've been slacking. I can't really say why because I'm not really sure why but I haven't written in days. This WILL change. You guys don't care because this isn't helping you, but I just wanted to share with you guys. So today on my bus ride to Philly I'm going to write. Write. WRITE. Any downtime I have I shall WRITE. It's been written so it's real, I must commit to it. You guys enjoy your Wednesday. We've made it over the HUMP!

SERENITY.

THIS^^^ Long distance Revolutionary Review will be posted tomorrow but today, I need a moment.