Welcome Back

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Hellloooooooo, anybody here?

I wouldn’t be surprised or upset if I lost the few readers I have.

I apologize for not blogging. I kind of let my mind take over. I don’t have any interesting updates…My absence was me standing in the shadows. I thought about blogging/writing. Between my own personal life, work, and the world itself I had material.

But

Somewhere between my last post and this one I fell into a dark hole. Like times before that fine grain of quicksand had me in a blink.  I was doing good one moment. Enjoying my Summer then like a fine mist I felt my moods getting darker, my emotions flashed between flood of tears or fiery rage. I stopped caring about things. Going to work was all done on auto-pilot. If I wasn’t sleeping I was eating. My plan to spend the summer working out amounted to less than 10 trips to the gym.

Gaining weight is always good for depression, right (insert eye roll)

I hung out with friends (waves to Mark, Rebekah, and Jessica), went on literally two dates. Great dates (still good friends with one guy) but I felt like I was simply doing what was expected. Summer is my favorite season. I looked forward to summer all winter. I had all these plans to get out and socialize and I made zero effort to do many of them. I blamed my inactivity on being busy at work.

I was busy alright…busy fighting my demons. Forcing my mind to focus on the fact that I had no reason to be depressed. I have a job, friends, family healthy. But depression has a way of taking those things and twisting them.

I have a job…yet it’s a place where I am pulled in many directions. My responsibility doesn’t match my paycheck. Feelings of being used and taken for granted washed over me.

I’m healthy…yet I’m fighting a disease (diabetes) that is a struggle. My weight gain was due to my insulin intake and my lack of physical activity.

Like many with depression I also suffer from social anxiety. You know that mental paranoia that when in social settings EVERYONE is mocking you, or you are fixated on making some faux pas. Some days the anxiety was worse than the depression. Imagine wanting to go to the gym, needing to but you don’t because you think you will be judged for it.

I judged this bout of depression as mild because I wasn’t waking up wishing I hadn’t. I knew with time it would pass.

I needed to flood my mind with something other than what my mind felt it was missing. I began listening to the Jillian Michaels podcast. I started to listen hoping it would drown my social anxiety and motivate me. I wanted to get out and be in the season I loved.

It worked. I got out more, dated, saw my friends, family. More importantly I mentally I began to see things differently. I began to see that happiness is something I can formulate.

So I did.

Saw my responsibilities at work as a learning experience that would match my salary one day or not. I focused on being thankful for that.

Started working out at home (a little, lol)

By the end of summer I met the guy I am currently dating. I went on the date not thinking past it. I hibernate during the colder months. But we are a month and a half along so maybe I have a hibernation partner.

Of course being around someone that does what family and friends do (care about you, feed you, make you laugh) plus the desire to have sex with you can and does increase the happiness level. Lift you up an inch out of the quicksand.

One day while looking at files on my USB drive (I wanted to share my writing with New Guy) I found a story that I had no memory of starting. Not surprising, I start and never finish a lot of stories but this one was different. A couple, on their wedding day, discussing why they shouldn’t get married, with an underlining plot of a soap opera (bride pregnant with another man’s child).

Watching soap operas as a kid is where my creative mind grew. I was reminded of my first love…writing; my life line when quicksand would get me. Even though I didn’t feel like putting pen to paper yet I listened to audio books. I finished two within a month. If I wasn’t listening to audio books I was listening to podcast. I don’t know that sound of other voices, other opinions, other people’s endings connected with me.

Today I woke up and said “I’m going to write a blog post.”

Well…how did I do?

Until next time,

xo

I wrote a book

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I wrote a book. I co-wrote a book with my friend, Corey Marshall.

We published through Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing.

“Sugar, a gunman for a crime organization is counting down to the day when he walks away to live out the rest of his life, living his dream with….
Honey, the girlfriend of Sugar, fears the dream is nothing more than a bedtime story. To Honey every turn towards the dream is fought with disappointment and heartache.
When a betrayal threatens not just the dream but the lives of Sugar and Honey, together they prove that their love and devotion holds surprises for everyone involved…at every turn.”

I got a text from Corey saying he is sending me an email. I check my email and

BAM…the book we created IS there IS real IS live.

People can buy our book, or get a sample of our book.

I’m still a little in awe. Ok, I’m in a LOT of awe. I don’t feel like this is real.

I gave up the idea/dream of becoming a published author about a year ago. It wasn’t something that I did with a heavy heart. I came to realize that I wasn’t devoting as much time and focus to my writing that I should. I didn’t like calling myself a “writer” because I wasn’t writing.

So I stopped calling myself a writer. I stopped thinking I was a writer. But this book, The Turn, had been finished in 2011. All that was needed was a thorough proofreading (done countless times and still not enough 😦 ), reformatted for presentation purposes and through the wonderment of self publishing I could be a published author.

To describe how far removed from writing I feel…this blog post as been a draft for three weeks.

The book has been out in the world for three weeks and I have only told a few close friends (i.e. my FB friends-the ones that actually read and respond to status updates), and my sister.

My Dad got a printed copy I specially made for him.

A few weeks before this all went down my Dad called me to say “Hi” and tell me he had been reading some of my work and that I should focus on my writing. That I shouldn’t abandon it.

Corey and I wrote the book as such a book 2 and 3 are warranted.

Time to shift gears…

If you know me (or have been reading the blog for a while) you know that May is a very hard month for me (Mother’s Day and the anniversary of my Mom’s death). I didn’t realize that Corey and I finished the book in May of 2011, and it was live on Amazon on May 31st.  My Mom was a HUGE supporter of my writing.  I think in a way she still is 😉

I WROTE A BOOK!!!!!! .

It is available to purchase HERE.

Until next time,

xo

Bloglovin’

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If you are a lover of blogs and you don’t have a Bloglovin’ account you are missing out. I think of Bloglovin’ as my own person newsstand for blogs.

Not only is it a great place to showcase your own blog. It is a wonderful tool to network. Mind you I haven’t done much networking but I like that I can follow fellow bloggers and see what blogs and post they follow and like.

Bloglovin’ has recently added collections to there site. When you “save” post you can save it to a particular category of your own choosing. This is very useful if you ever want to go back and find a post. I have fun names for my collections. Stuff that I want to buy are in “Wishing on a star”, clothing is “Tops N Bottoms”.

Sometimes if I am having a busy week I will wait till a quiet moment on the weekends and go through my feed. I love that I can have literally hours of content while learning about the newest makeup and fashions trends or DIY projects or read up on personal essays.

Otherwise I usually start my day, sitting at my desk with a cup of coffee/tea at my side while I go through the varies blogs.

*Do you have a Bloglovin’ account? How do you keep track of the blogs you read?*

Until next time,

xo

Dirty Desire

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*This is a story I began and never finished…”

I’m really not as appalled as you would think I should be. Truthfully I am very flattered. Echella is a breathtakingly beautiful woman. All long legs and slender arms. Curves placed in all the right areas. When she walks she looks as if she is gliding along. Her facial features implore your attention. Her eyes are a seductive concoction of deep brown with flecks of honey. Her lips a heart shaped pout. At times when we are talking I force myself to look away. Never do I want to be caught staring.

Me…I’m beautiful in that sickly sweet way. I have a beautiful smile and expressive dark brown eyes that are so dark to gaze into them is to fall head first in a black hole.
I’ve been called ‘Brownies’ and ‘BP- black pearls’ because of their rich, deep color.
If Echella had flecks of honey I had ribbons of fudge.
My body is a valley of curves. From breast to hips to thighs to ass to calves, nothing is a straight line. To caress my body is akin to playing airplane with your hand.
Echella has straight to mid back hair, almost the same color as her eyes. A chestnut brown with highlights of honey. Never before have I seen a woman growing out highlights and have it not matter. The dark roots somehow complimented her honey strands.
Me…my hair is black down to the scalp. I wear my hair shaved off because doing hair has never been my thing. If I let my hair do its own thing my hair, like Echella’s, it would match the color of my eyes.
Within my eye sockets I can appreciate the dark color. On my head the color blends too much with my skin- a clear caramel- and gives me license to fade in the background.
But let me clear up something…even if I wanted the background I wouldn’t be able to last there long.
From the innocence of childhood I have wanted all eyes on me. The 3rd child of 5 girls it is very easy to get pushed, placed…or wander into the background. But I learned that if you weren’t up front and center you lost your voice, your say, your choice, your control.

I love the spotlight almost as much as I love control.
And…I’m getting ahead of myself…
I wasn’t upset nor shocked. I’d thought about it, numerous times. Life has a way of showing that no one is above anything. If you are at the bottom of a well you will do whatever it takes to claw yourself back up to the top.
I saw my decision as a way to claw back up…I never intended to hurt anyone…but they kind of threw themselves into my path…they made the choice and in the end they got what they deserved.
And I’m getting ahead of myself.

Echella had been shopping in the store for a few weeks, maybe a month when she offered to take me out after my shift.
Whenever she came into the store we would chat it up like we were old friends.
“Do you notice how men stare at you?”
Echella had a lovely French accent that only enhanced the allure of her. Any word that came out of her mouth sounded seductive and sensual.
I regarded her with a look of pure skepticism. Standing on my own- yeah sure – men stared. I was a black woman with a shaved head. Occasionally that brought a few glances. BUT standing next to Echella…no one paid attention to me.
Working in NYC you encounter Fashionistas all over the place. I tried not to think much about my style or lack thereof. I tried to do the best I could with what I had.
Echella was a Fashionista. She wore the latest trends in clothing, handbags and jewelry. Her outfits looked as if they were plucked from the pages of a fashion magazine. Where I worked- a pricey lingerie shop- we had been featured in a few magazines. Even with an employee discount I wasn’t able to afford anything in there.
Paired with her, in my Old Navy trousers and Old Navy cardigan with my statement bracelet I knew I looked stylish…but I also knew I didn’t look like a Fashionista.
I’ll admit that I was a bit jealous when I first saw her. I figured she lived at home, didn’t have bills and was able to spend whatever she wanted on her closet. With Mommy and Daddy backing what she couldn’t.
Rarely do I make assumptions…but fuck she looked the part.
I answered her question with a scoff.
She said in her delicate French accent, “Ooh no. Men watch you. I have seen it. Their eyes light up with you approach them. When you smile they smile.”
I had no clue where she was going with this.
“So. I’ve seen men break their necks to get a look at you.” I shrugged my shoulders. “Men are visual creatures, Echella. You’re beautiful.”
“Yes, I am.” She said point blank.
“Ooookkkkaaayyy…no need to hide the conceit.” I said smiling a little. I couldn’t argue. She really was.
“Should I hide away? Or ignore what everyone else wants to focus on? Or should I use it?”
I looked her over, carefully and slowly. From her Stuart Weitzman shoes, to her Tory Burch sheath dress, to her Michael Kors handbag and sunglasses and then to her face. Her youthful, fresh out of college face.
“Do you live at home with your parents?” I asked, nibbling on a piece of lettuce from my Cobb salad.
“No. I have a roommate, but after this week I will be living alone.”
“Where?”
“Manhattan, Chelsea.”
I allowed those words to sink in.
Echella allowed those words to sink in.
2012 + Manhattan = Way overpriced rent. Living with a roommate was tough…going at it alone…at 27…
“Not to be rude but do your parents help with the rent?”
Echella tossed back her chestnut, honey highlighted mane and smiled. A set of straight, bright white teeth flashed before my eyes.
“No. My parents live in Brooklyn on a fixed income. I help them out with their rent.”
“Ok, Echella, what does that have to do with whether or not men find me attract-“
Like a ball to a bat the answer came soaring at me.
“You have a Sugar Daddy.” I said nonchalantly.
Echella, seductively licked her lips and leaned over the table.
She was going to tell me a secret.
“I do…the kind that I control.”
My turn to smile and for good measure I added a laugh.
“Control…you sound like you pick when you see him? Nice set up.”
Echella narrowed her eyes at me and leaned back into her chair.
“I do pick and choose when I see…them.”
Them?
How many did a girl need?
“I’m a Call Girl, Desiree.”

*Was it interesting? Should I write more, finish?”

Until next time,
xo

Bear Hugs

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I’ve been M.I.A…I’m always M.I.A when it comes to blogging. Unlike other bloggers I don’t think of my blog as my main job. It isn’t a source of income for me. So many times I forget I have one.

I blog for a creative outlet. At the start of the year I swore to myself that I would make time to blog. I would make time to write. As I have gotten more immersed in work I find myself not writing much.

I still read. I still think of story ideas. I’m still working for final edits of my manuscript.

But that’s it…I know I don’t have to apologize for working hard. Yet a part of me feels guilty because I’m not working hard on one that I am passionate about.

The one thing I used to use to identify myself as…a writer.

It’s winter here on the East Coast. Perfect time to really hunker down and perfect a writing schedule.

Once I get home I don’t know if it is the toll of the day or my non interest but I don’t write.

I catch up on TV shows.

I read.

I listen to music.

I cook.

I check Facebook.

I check Instagram.

I’ve done everything BUT write.

I want to change that. I desperately need to change that.

I know there are a bunch of productivity tools that I can use to help me with my procrastination…I tell myself I’ll look into them tomorrow…

If I’m going to hibernate during the season (and I have) why am I not giving my “passion” a huge ole bear hug.

*Do you have issues with procrastination? If so how have you gotten over it*

Until next time,

xo

That that ish right there…

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Sooooo last night was the long awaited premier of the new Fox show Empire, starting  Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson.

Howard plays Lucious Lyon, head of music empire called…none other than Empire Entertainment. Henson plays Cookie Lyon, the ex wife of Lucious who upon coming home from a 17 year stint in prison wants half her share of the Empire. Whatever she did to get in prison…I think she stole money. it wasn’t very clear to me…that money was used to start EMPIRE…

Now as a writer I am always excitied to see black folks on the screen. I am excited to see projects that involve people of color both behind and in front of the camera. Lee Daniels (director of the film The Butler) is one of the executive producers.

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I saw the trailers. I just knew that I love anything Taraji P. Henson is in and Terrence Howard is easy on the eyes. I knew it was a drama about a family’s struggle for power of music empire (see how they got the title) but I didn’t expect it to be SOOOOOO DRAMATIC.

I mean is it supposed to be.

Henson’s character is fresh out of jail. Cookie coming off as the supreme ghetto Queen that she was when she went in works. I will give the writers credit for her sarcastic, snappy comebacks.

So far she is the BEST thing in the show that I am not laughing at.

Terrence Howard as Lucious Lyon, a former drug dealer turned hip hop mogul that learns he is dying just as his past is coming back to haunt him. Between his permed hair, Hugh Hefner scarves and blazers that look like smoking jackets I do not know what to make of this character. Sadly when the episode had flashbacks Howard was more convincing as the drug dealer spitting lyrics on the stoop than hip hop mogul.

Bryshere Gray as Hakeem Lyon is the youngest of Lucious and Cookie’s three sons. He is an up and coming Hip Hop star…His character reads like a cross between Drake and Justin Bieber…so I call him Bieber Drake.

Jussie Smollett as Jamal Lyon, is the middle son. The black sheep because he is gay. So that means he has to be a sensitive songwriter…non of that hardcore hip hop ish…I call him Gay John Legend because he also plays the piano.

Trai Byers as Andre Lyon is the eldest son and CFO of the company. He is Ivy- League educated and believes he should run the company when Daddy announces he will be grooming one son to replace him. Of course the show needs a villain we want to love…I guess this is Andre…He will stab his brothers in the back if it means getting to the top of the Empire (pun intended) yet you want to love him because he has worked so hard for his spot at the table…married a white girl and everythang

Malik Yoba as Vernon Turner is  Lucious’ longtime friend so that means he has to be a business partner, and chairman of Empire Entertainment. I’m not sure what is going on with this character but the spotlight was ALL on him…cause he was shinning like some greasy lips that just ate a piece of fried chicken.

For a first episode a lot was thrown in…Why writers feel the need to do that I don’t know. But they do it and at times it was hard to follow. Once scene Cookie is leaving jail, two scenes later she is already set up in an apartment, with boxes and bags of clothing. I know money talks but damn…

There is a cool chemistry between Howard and Henson that does show well when Howard isn’t being overly dramatic…which he does in every scene. From how he delivers the lines to how he sits in a chair…unless it isn’t overly dramatic to lean to the left in your chair when having a power struggle conversation and can’t be bothered.

I will continue watching because I love me some Cookie and because sometimes I like a train wreck.

50 Cent (producer of the wonderful show Power) said that Empire is a rip off from his show…

Boo…you do not need to worry…if the first episode is anything of what the rest will be the empire will crumble (like what I did there with the title 😉

*Did you watch Empire? What are your thoughts?* 

Yes this post is more sarcastic than I normally do…but come on!!! I have a lot of material here.

Until next time,

xo

A rose by any other name would smell as sweet

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Jade or Chyna my Mom used to tell me. Those were my name choices till a friend came to visit her in the hospital and suggested…

JENDAYI

Jen-Di-Ee is how I was taught it is pronounced. My mom told me my name is from the Shona Tribe of Zimbabwe, Africa. But I have also learn that my name has Egyptian origins with the same meaning.

Jendayi means To give thanks.

As the story goes (or how I remember, if I am wrong my sis will correct me, lol)…my mom was in the hospital, sick, her diabetes wasn’t under control. I was in danger. She was in danger. Doctors performed a C-Section in the 7th month.

I was a premmie.

My mom’s friend saw the name in a book and thought it was beautiful.

The meaning certainly fit since it was my surviving was was touch and go.

I think my name is very beautiful but I never felt that it FIT me. As a shy kid I HATED having to repeat my name because of the different pronunciation.  Growing up in the 80’s it was very a different name. To this day I have only come across two other people named Jendayi

I cringed (still do) when people attempt to say my name getting it wrong in all types of ways. Family members have spelled it wrong.

When I got to college I was meeting so many new people it was easier to say “Hi, my name is JC.”
It worked and I stuck with it after college.

Only my family really uses my given name. It hasn’t caused any problems on government documents because I will never legally change it. To do that would be disrespectful to my mom, dad and my mom’s friend.

Sometimes it’s odd to hear an old friend say it. It was never an issue of not liking Jendayi I just never felt it suited me despite the beautiful meaning and story behind it.

Almost never do I get “What does the JC stand for?” Not many people go around by initials…I only have one other friend that does.  Yet people rarely ask what they stand for.

But when they do it is definitely is a conversation starter. 🙂

Until next time,

xo

Weekend Routine

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Happy Saturday 🙂

Whether I have errands to run or not I wake up early on the weekends. Part of that is because I am a morning person that enjoys early hours, I have a cat who doesn’t like an empty food dish, waking up before 9a on any day is routine for me.

Some Saturdays I will go visit my dad and sister in Westchester and have brunch. That routine involves lots of travel and patience 😉

This Saturday I am chilling at home. Most Saturdays during the winter I chill at home.

I started my day at 5am…that’s when my alarm went off. I made sure I was up early because I had a Peapod Food Delivery coming. I don’t care what people say…for me, living in NJ with no car AND it’s winter food delivery services are a godsend.  No more lugging home bags of cat litter, cans of soups, and laundry detergent. I use to Fresh Direct also. Which service depends on what I need/want. I always opt for the earliest delivery time.

After I put the food away it was laundry time. Perk of my apartment building is having washing machines not only in the building but on each floor.

🙂

That being said as I type this it is 9:46am and I am done with laundry.

The picture above captures what the rest of my day will be like. I have to do some work on formatting a manuscript that is finished. I want to outline some blog post ideas for the week…and I want to cuddle and spend time with Henry. Lifetime or Netflix will be playing in the background. A nap will work it’s way into the day.

I have my B&BW’s Marshmallow Fireside candle burning.

The candle creates a cozy warm vibe.

Lunch might be takeout (I’m craving pizza) or Tomato & Roasted Pepper soup. Dinner will be pork chops (thanks to food delivery and whatever Pinterest recipe I find), steamed veggies and brown rice.

This is my Saturday routine- Get what I need done early and relax the rest of the day…it can also be my Sunday routine depending on my mood. This is the first time in WEEKS that I have focused on my writing other than the blog. Usually I’m being uber lazy and watching TV or reading, lol.

*Do you have a weekend routine? Comment below*

Have a great day!!!!

Until next time,

xo

World Introvert Day

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Nowadays there is a national/world day for almost anything…

Today January 2nd is WORLD INTROVERT DAY

Per Google an Introvert is

  1. A term introduced by the psychologist Carl Jung to describe a person whose motives and actions are directed inward. Introverts tend to be preoccupied with their own thoughts and feelings and minimize their contact with other people. 

I didn’t fully understand that I was an introvert until I was in my mid 30’s.

I was dating an

  1. extrovert. Psychology. a person characterized by extroversion; a person concerned primarily with the physical and social environment (opposed to introvert ). Psychology. to direct (the mind, one’s interest, etc.) outward or to things outside the self.

He introduced me to the book by Susan Cain, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in A World That Can’t Stop Talking

I haven’t finished reading the book but many introverts I have spoken with have said it is a wonderful read.

After reading some of the book and doing my own research I slowly began to realize that YES as a child I was shy, as a teen and young adult I was reserved, but as an adult I am an introvert.

Many people don’t understand that introverts ARE NOT anti-social. We enjoy being social but on our terms.

Because I am an avid thinkers small talk can sometimes bore me and I avoid it if I can.

The extrovert and I parted ways…not fault of neither. It just wasn’t a good fit.

Dating has been hard for me. The tug of wanting to be around people then needing to be away from them. Many men don’t understand my silence isn’t anger. My silence is just me thinking, something I enjoy doing as much as I enjoy laughing.

Introverts are like devices that need to be recharged…the way we recharge is by being alone. Doing the things we love.

After a week of work sometimes all I want to do is get home on Friday, make sure I have enough food till Monday and lock the door.

I might spend that time reading, writing, listening to music, catching up on TV, movies or podcasts.

I was never a person that had a large group of friends. I know LOTS of people but only a handful I would consider and acknowledge as friends. I’ve lost a few friends mainly because I didn’t understand what being an introvert was…I didn’t understand who I was.

I do now. I have learned to understand that I MUST balance my “alone” time and my “social” time. I don’t have to apologize for it.

I’m proud to be

I-am-an-introvert-quote introvert1 tumblr_mj81ssQSxp1rz0991o1_500

*Happy World Introvert Day to all my thinkers enjoying their alone time*

Until next time,

xo

HAPPY NEW YEAR

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A new year brings out new promises and new hopes and dreams. It’s a rebirth.

I promise to try to blog more in 2015.

I hope to do more blogging in 2015.

I will be dreaming about my move and well worth vacation. Neither are planned…both still in the dreaming stages, lol.

I wish all of you a year filled with laughter, love, happiness and good food 🙂