Wednesday night I pretended I had a social life again but going out to a new restaurant/lounge in Harlem called Nabe Underground. The top level is a restaurant and the underground level around the corner has a speakeasy vibe with plush seating, a small stage in the corner, a bar, and tall tables. The restaurant’s food was authentically Japanese with a variety of tempura options to choose from and tasty appetizers. I really enjoyed the brussel sprouts in sesame sauce.
However, the actual food on the event menu was brunch. Plates & Crates is a concert tour where musicians, singers, and emcees perform classic hip-hop and R&B at various venues while serving an evening brunch. Dinner included a choice of sangria or a mimosa and the meal for the night was french toast with salmon croquettes or chicken wings.
The theme for this month’s concert was Mary J. Blige. Since March is Women’s History Month, they wanted to honor a woman in the genre and who better than the Queen of Hip-Hop Soul? (more…)
I’m glad 2014 is coming to a close. It seemed like this year good times were quickly overshadowed by struggles and difficult moments. Thankfully, I’m a trooper with an amazing support system of family and friends to get me through it all. I’ve learned more about myself this year and I look forward to learning even more about life, society, God and myself this year. When it comes to 2015, I feel like things can only go up from here.
I really hope this year can allow me to be even more authentically myself and to manifest/actualize certain goals, dreams and hard work I’ve put in in certain areas of my life. I hope this year brings more amazing moments and milestones than trials, and more laughter than tears. I also look forward to reaching some of the goals I have on my list for 30. Here’s an update: (more…)
“Before you pull your own trigger and get pissed off or fall into a soup of anxiety, resentment or overwhelm- if you can just for a brief second realize you are lost, lost in thought and isolated from the world around you. Rather than pulling your own trigger, come back to your life (world) exactly as it is in this moment. You might become aware of smells. You might hear a dog barking. You might become aware of the sensation of your feet on the ground. You might even notice that the family member standing in front of you is just an imperfect person immersed in themselves with their own struggles and reactivity (even if they vacation in the French Riviera). And then you will know- you are no longer pulling your own trigger. Instead, you are living your life.” – Randall Sokoloff
For the first time in about six weeks or so, I’ve stopped pulling my own emotional triggers. With so much on my mind and so many changes and realizations happening professionally, personally and otherwise, it’s been hard for me to remain mindful and in the present. It’s often easier for me to overanalyze what I could’ve done differently in the past or what I should be doing to prepare for a better future or to get lost in thoughts of what that future may look like. In thinking about my drive to be more present, I thought this exerpt above from an email I received yesterday was a friendly reminder to come back to this moment and live in it. Doing so will allow me to let go of whatever negative emotions and thoughts are trying to distract me so I can stay focused on the beauty in the present and the tasks at hand this day.
In making a quick trip to Boston without my laptop I found a few ways to keep busy while my friends (who were gracious enough to let me crash at their place) were out working. One of these ways was plowing through a book that also dubbed as a housewarming gift left decoratively on their coffee table.
This book of photography is the first book (of 100) I’ve finished so far. I thought I’d skim through pictures I liked and put the book down after a few minutes, but an hour later I found myself enthralled by the stories, quotes and artistic portrayals of a variety of faces and expressions of my beloved city. (more…)
“Ebola in America,” “ISIS,” “the war on drugs,” “the war on terrorism,” these are a few constant headlines that play over and over on the news, in print and on the radio. While it is helpful to remain knowledgeable and informed of the world’s events, how much of it gets blown out of proportion? How much of it gets inundated to the point where we are afraid (or maybe even paranoid)? (more…)
As inspiration for this goal on my list for 30, here are a few pictures of places I’d like to go within the year. I’m not sure if I’ll hit any or all of them, but a girl can dream:
Where’s a place you’ve never been that you’d like to travel to?
I don’t know why so many people are up in arms about Beyonce’s thigh gap or her alleged photo-shopping. It just goes to show that even “the baddest chick in the game” (according to some) sees flaws in her body that she’d like to filter out for pictures posted on her account online. How many of us post all of our photos without any filters, cropping or adjustments whatsoever? Even if you don’t, how many of us know exactly at what angles to position ourselves so we look slimmer, or more appealing? I know I do. So I don’t see why it’s a big deal. We all want to put our best face forward literally and figuratively. Plus, we all have areas or features of ourselves that we’d rather hide or mask or “filter out” so it’s not exposed for all to see. It should be more acceptable for us to share who we are without those filters, but frankly mainstream theories of beauty still reign supreme. (more…)
“The first rule of Fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club.”
I started reading The 90-Day Novel yesterday and I got to the end of the first part of the book before the author delves into the day-to-day novel-writing process where he lists a few “hints” (pointers, rules, and suggestions) to follow for the next 90 days. The first hint being:
“Don’t talk about your story to others.”
See the commonality? He claims that doing so eliminates the urgency in getting the story out and down on paper. It also adds pressure to get the story done and to make it “good,” which usually just ends up being more of a hindrance than a motivator to write. So in my attempts to take a different approach in trying to accomplish this goal of completing a draft (and hopefully publishing it at some point), I’m going to follow his first rule of “write club.” I’ll contain my excitement and not talk (or blog) about my story…until it’s done.
“Follow your bliss and the universe will open doors where there were only walls.” – Joseph Campbell
Since putting my list together, it seems like the universe is confirming that these are the right goals for me to strive towards. Case in point: while looking on my Twitter app this morning, I noticed a tweet about a book that caught my eye because I want to read through more books and get a novel drafted. The book is “The 90-Day Novel” by Alan Watt, an author who actually wrote his first novel in 90 days. The book seems to chronicle his writing journey and steps to take in finally getting a story idea down on paper (or typed) from start to finish. (more…)