The Splits Are Back Again – Trend

While some of us fashion elitist’s were out today looking for winter clothes in 30 degree heat (I think that’s about 98 degrees for Americans), celebrities on the red carpet were slowly catching on a trend I wrote about last year, correction! I wrote about it almost two years ago (2011/11/29)
Splits Solange

For my fashion IQ on this trend click onto the following link to the post.

https://beautyandtheblackwoman.wordpress.com/2011/11/29/doing-the-splits-trend/

Now I know that the lovely Solange looked ‘a treat’ in her green dress with a huge split up the thighs, but all I could think about when I saw this photo was ‘why are these so called hip celebrities just catching tail of this so yesterday look?’

Splits jordin-sparks-clive-davis-party__oPt Splits Ashanti Grammys

So before you rush out to copy their look bare in mind that it’s almost on the way out.

You should be looking forward, not behind.

Psss… Monochromatic hues (again?), tangerine and other pastels, ditsy printed florals are just some of the trends coming ahead.

Don’t get left behind.

What the trend setters are looking ahead to….

Diane+von+Furstenberg+Spring+2013

 

Spring summer 2013 – Dian Von Fursten.

Note the soft flowy blouse in citrus line, almost shear. The raw silk shorts (although I love candy pink), must be a hang over from last season.

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Django Unchained – Film Review And Why You Should See It

Django Unchained

The first I heard of the film Django Unchained was on the news and it wasn’t all good stuff. As usual Quentin Tarantino was on the spotlight for making another controversial film or what not. I’m not a fan of the N-word. I don’t use it and I don’t like it when anyone whether they be black or white uses it in my presence. I don’t believe that the word empowers black people for I’ve never seen it used in a positive context from black or white people.

But the media didn’t deter me from going to see the film. I’m rational enough to understand that any film on slavery that is honestly depicting the historical content of what had happened during those times will not only be brutal but also contain the use of the N word.

Any film maker who would make a film about slavery and leave that word out would be trying to sensor history and give us all a false impression of what really happened.

Django Unchained for all of those who haven’t seen it is for me the most honest depiction of what went on during slavery and it taught me a lot about slavery that I didn’t know. Yes the film was confronting, (the truth always is) and very uncomfortable at times but it was worth putting myself through the discomfort to re-educate myself on an ugly chapter in black history that has continually haunted us.

I can see this film being used in schools to help educate children about slavery. Django Unchained is not a pretty movie but neither is slavery and Quentin Tarantino’s trademark of gory blood scenes makes it an even uglier and uncomfortable film to sit through especially if you’ve got a weak stomach like myself. But there also funny moments. The humor in the film destructs you from the fact that you’re actually watching a horror film based on reality.

It is also the first slave film I’ve noticed where there was no singing or dancing.

While Django Unchained is not based on a true story, the de-humanizing depiction of slave life was real and if some of you are looking for answers to the question ‘why don’t black people just get along’, you don’t have to look further than the relationships between the black characters in the films.

Samuel L Jackson

The Chilling Uncle Tom

Samuel L Jackson was chilling as Uncle Tom.

The film is being classed in the spaghetti western/blaxploitation genre. Being a fan of both genres, I wonder why we’ve all had to wait so long to see the creation of a cinematic black legend character such as Django. Django is strong, hot blooded, fearless. Everything a slave was never meant to be.

I applaud Quentin for developing the character and the story and hope it inspires the rest of us black writers to create more black legends for generations of young black people to aspire to.

For all those of you who may have written the film off due to some of the negative publicity it’s received, I urge you to ignore what you think you’ve heard and see it for yourself. Django Unchained is not a racist film, it’s a film about racism and the media should probably distinguish between the two before it starts playing the race card.

One of the most chilling moments in the film that left you gasping. Leonardo’s character, slave owner Mr Candy, threatens to crush Kerry Washington’s skull character.

If you think you’re going to be uncomfortable as a black person during the film you will be. Because this film touches on all those painful psychological places associated to the skin you are in. It’s not a feel good movie.

I also felt sorry for some of the white audience that went to see the film. I saw the film in gold class, thanks to some very generous people in my life and when the film was through and I was walking out of the theater, not one single white person could look me in the face. I was the only black person at in the cinema of one of the wealthiest suburbs in Melbourne, and boy did my presence bring the reality of the film to this people.

Please be open minded and go see the film. This is the first film I’m actually encouraging people to go to.

http://unchainedmovie.com/

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Will Power and Success

Book Will Power

The only time I read the paper is on the weekends, and it’s always the same paper, The Weekend Age. Never mind that I’m not necessarily a fan of one of the majority stake holder’s Gena Rinehart (aka richest woman in the world) of Fairfax Media (not very fair at the moment) who thinks that Africans are happy to work for a dollar a day or was that two dollars?

My favorite part of the paper is always the little magazines that come as part of the paper. They can sometimes contain little life eye opening tit bits, one of such was a book review by Suzanne Harrignton, ‘Resisting Temptation’, on the book, ‘Will Power: Why Self Control Is The Secret to Success’, by US R F Baumeister (social psychologist, I hate social psychologists) and New York Times science writer, John Tierney.

I have not yet purchased this book. I hope to have the will power and self control to take myself to the book store at some point in the next few days, maybe weeks, but hopefully while sudden madness that grips everyone to change and lead better lives every new year is still with me.

I must confess I am not a fan of self help books which this one seems to fall into the category of and I do hate social psychologist perhaps because of their generalization and their simplification of the human psyche, but mostly for their lack of understanding of the mind and body connection (I’ve been advised that this is somewhat changing as I write this, as new psychologists are being taught a little about neuroscience and neural biology). Maybe psychology will one day deserve to be called a science!

But  I really want to read this book, really. The review was so conclusively convincing about the benefits of having an ‘iron clad’ will to guarantee you success.

What I liked about what this book is that it makes a link between our genetics, biology, and the link between glucose and self control. Ringing any bells anyone?

So if this post seems to make no sense and if I never make it to that book store to buy the book, it will be most likely because I’m writing this on an empty stomach, fast losing focus, and making less and less sense and pretty soon some of you will be switching off, because my sugar levels are dangerously low but I don’t have the self control to stop typing, get off the couch and make myself a decent breakfast.

Five minutes later…

FYI I did take a mini break, stuffed some honey and sesame seeds in my mouth, while googling self control and glucose link.

Self Control And Glucose

The good news is that researchers are pointing to the fact that your blood sugar levels affect your ability to have self control. The bad news is that self control lowers blood sugar levels.

So the more you exercise your will power to stay strong, the lower your blood sugar gets and the more loss of self control you get. Confused?

My suggestion is that if will power and self control are important to you then read the book, it appears to have some scientific merits.

Why Will Power Is So Important

Lack of willpower is associated with some of the following:

  • Compulsive Spending and Borrowing
  • Impulsive Violence
  • Underachievement At School
  • Procrastination At Work
  • Alcohol and drug abuse
  • Unhealthy Diet
  • Lack of Exercise
  • Chronic Anxiety
  • Explosive Anger

How is failure of self control affecting your life?

Those of you who are interested in the field of psychology can purchase the original laboratory paper of which it appears the book was based on and review other scholastic articles regarding on this subject from the American Psychological Association or click on the following link to take you their website.

Those who don’t have time to read articles can read the abstract and get the gist of the findings and if you believe the findings you will forever be armed with a dose of sugar to attempt to gain control of your will.
Other thoughts on this matter is that never start your day on an empty stomach. Your blood sugar levels are lowest in the morning because you’ve been asleep and haven’t had anything to eat. You wont be making any intelligent decisions and your self control and your ability to maintain your will power will be compromised long before you’ve attempted any plans.
Those of you wanting to lose weight and are struggling with your will power and self control have a very challenging road ahead of you.
The APA as also produced other tools to help you with your will power.
http://www.apa.org/helpcenter/willpower.pdf
Good luck with your will power and self control and your new years resolutions.

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The Benefits Of Having A Hobby

Sewing Basket

Last night I got excited. One of the largest commercial fabric and pattern stores in Australia is having an half-price sale starting today of course! Yeah for me!

I’m not the greatest sewer but the stuffed toys we were forced to make in my eighth grade class taught me enough to enable me to be able to mend my own clothes, sew a button and make intelligent decisions about fabric choices and of course style and cuts.

And every year because of my earlier experiences I undergo this grandiose desire to go out purchase fabrics and patterns to maybe make my own clothes. Well it never goes anywhere but that’s not the point of this blog.

Sewing may not be a strong enough passion for me to motivate me to become a seamstress or heaven, forbid a designer but it stimulates my imagination and motivates me to go out and try a different type of creative activity.

It’s something that I do for myself because I enjoy it and the idea of wanting to sew as led me to develop a healthy interest in fashion for which I am grateful and I look forward to spending at least two hours at some point today looking at fabrics, feeling their texture, and dreaming of making something out of them, although that might never happen.

I used to feel guilty about this waste of time but then realized that my passion for wanting to sew, which went as far as buying patterns, cutting them out on fabrics and then leaving them because I don’t have a machine to sew or the space is a hobby.

And in the land of hobbies it’s okay to start projects and not finish them because it’s not really about sewing, it’s the fact that the process of looking for fabrics and patterns creates a different creative outlet for me and gives me an opportunity to relax and escape my daily stresses.

Everything we do in life is has become so competitive and about being the best at this or that and we are constantly judging ourselves and beating ourselves up for not achieving the sometimes impossible.

For me hobbies are playtime and I have many of them! From sewing to photography, the stock market to natural medicine, making my own hair products, and just having a healthy curiosity about life. I get to be a child again and explore with my imagination at all things that could be possible. And I make no excuses for not completing some of the projects I’ve started.

Below are 2 reasons of why hobbies are important from the Website ThinkLink

  1. http://thinklink.in/why-is-it-important-to-have-a-hobby/ . For more information on this topic visit their website.
    1. As a remedy for fatigueA hobby is the easiest way to restore your balance whenever you are over-worked or stressed. Since it is an activity of your choosing, it will always give you pleasure and help you to unwind. Even if you indulge in your hobby for a short period of time, you still can feel the difference in your energy level and spirit.
    2. As a chance to connect with yourself
      Perhaps one of the best active ways to get in touch with yourself is to explore yourself through your hobby. It does not matter as much  what your hobby is; than having a hobby of your own. It is the private time you have with yourself. Interestingly, when you have a hobby, you will strive to create time for yourself and manage your schedule well to keep that appointment with yourself.

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Dealing With Difficult People

Happy new Year to all! Hope that this year is a little more prosperous than the last one was.

How do you deal with other people’s insecurities and not let their negativeness get the better of you? How do you deal with emotionally deranged individuals who consider themselves somewhat enlightened and yet feel the constant need to constantly put down your ideas and try to make you look and feel stupid with every thing you say or do?

thorns

How do you deal with people who are constantly trying to reassure themselves by putting you down?

I have such a person in my life at the moment. And so far I’ve remained silent, refusing to react or respond to this particular thorn in my side’s negative attitude towards me but even though my silence has been golden, I’ve been fighting the urge to fight back at this very deluded individuals deliberate attempts at sabotaging my ideas which have fortunately been well received by others in our social circle.

This situation is new in my life and whereas the old me would have deleted this person from mind and memory, social media (aka facebook) makes ignoring the passive aggressive nature of this individual rather difficult. I’m beginning to get a whole new insight into the meaning of cyber bulling.

I feel silly deleting them from my friends list as they haven’t publicly humiliated or bullied me. It’s through personal messages via my inbox that they have been undermining me.

I am staying strong, though this is easier said then done. Not letting my thoughts be dominated  by one individuals corrupt sense of self can be difficult but one of the ways in which Iv’e been able to overcome past frenemies has been to use their negativity as a driving force to push me to do things. This has involved fighting my own insecurities that this person has raised of self worthlessness smallness and self pity. It’s made me work harder and she’s making me work harder.

While I haven’t got a solution to this problem, I will continue to be silent, go about my own business as I don’t think that this person is of sound mind or body. I’ve always believed that only sick people and people who feel bad about themselves go about causing trouble for others. Happy people are less likely to cause dramas.

I could confront them about what their doing but I don’t believe that they have the mental capacity to understand their own passive-aggressive nature and I don’t think that it will improve the situation. I can see them getting defensive and even more aggressive. I’ve so much to do and don’t want to get myself caught up or weighed down in this situation. I’ll take the high road, turn the other cheek.

Being aware that this person is a bully and a condescending lost soul doesn’t only make it easy for me to ignore them but to also lessen the impact they have  over what I do which is very important.

Everyday I wake up and I tell myself that they are not worthy and they are not!

Although sharing this on my blog has been therapeutic it’s also made me think that I’ve given this person more of a spotlight in my life than they deserved! The idea that they have affected me enough to write about them saddens me, so you wont be hearing about this person again. I am human but I’m not proud of my winging session though I’d be very interested in learning how other people deal with difficult people in their lives.

Do you have someone like that in your life? How are you coping?

 

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Struggling to love your hair? The relationship you have with your hair determines how  much effort you put into it. I am talking weaves, wigs… I am talking hair sprouting out of your scalp…

Taking on any hair challenge requires a strength of will, determination, and a commitment as well as an understanding of why you are doing what you are doing. There are no immediate results and sometimes very little satisfaction for the effort that goes in it, in the short term.

This post is meant to prepare your mind for any hair challenge that you might undertake next year and it’s especially designed to kick start my ‘length retention challenge’ starting in January. For all those interested, join the facebook page or wordpress and stay up to date with latest blog posts.

The title of this post was inspired by an idea and concept introduced to me via…

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The Sweetest Things…..

Yesterday a three year old boy I had been playing with stopped me on my miserable track and gave me something to reflect on.

He did this by thanking me for playing with him. Lately I’ve been so caught up in trying to get my writing career on track that I’ve been letting those sweet priceless moments of life pass me by.

Yes being a writer/ poet/all round creative person with too many ideas doesn’t pay the bills.

But something in me still captivates the imagination of a three year old, enough to elicit in him the grace to thank me for playing with him.

That wasn’t the only sweet thing that happened to me yesterday. I also got a phone call from a designer who has offered to design a dress for me for my second public poetry performance. This is just fabulous because I don’t have an extra cent to my name right now.

And to top it off, I am also the sister of a student journalist who reduced me to tears when she sent me a message to say that she appreciated me. Love you Pauline. Just letting you know that I cry every time I think of your message.

My bank balance maybe empty but my emotional cup is overflowing!

I am indeed a very fortunate person and so I believe are the majority of all of us. We just get caught up in the rat race and the pursuit of dreams and forget that life is still going on and that we mean something to someone…

Here’s taking a moment to appreciate those things that money, fame, or fortune can’t buy…

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