A Woman’s Emergency Kit

This past weekend I found myself unprepared. I left the house on Friday night, and I did not return until late Sunday Evening. I found myself very unprepared and did not have the things that I needed. Here’s a list of an emergency kit that every woman should keep on her, whether it’s in her purse or her car.

1) Tampons and Pads.
2) Toothbrush and travel sized toothpaste.
3) At least one pair of panties.
4) Contact case & glasses (if you wear contacts and glasses)
5) Cash (at least 20-30).

If you just don’t make it home, with these items you will have everything that you essentially need. Or if you are out and your cycle starts you have a change of clothes and tampons to take care of it. You always want to be prepared. I learned the hard way.

King of the Month

King of the Month is a segment dedicated to presenting you with young men who are intelligent, doing good things for themselves and their communities, and who are breaking the many stereotypes put against them.  There are good black men out here. Don’t let media and “statistics” fool you.  This month, I present to you:

Samuel Valeus

You can find him on instagram @bookofsam_

august kom

AW:  How old are you and where are you from?

S:  I’m 21 years old. I’m from Philadelphia, PA. Both of my parents were born and raised in Haiti. I have a spiritual connection with the entire African diaspora though.

AW:  What is your life’s motto or mission?

S:  Knowledge of self will make everything seem clear and brighten your vision.

AW:  Are you a student, entrepreneur, in the workforce, etc? Describe what you do.

S:  I’m a student at Penn State Harrisburg majoring in Criminal Justice and Sociology. I try to read at least 2 books a week because I know Black/African people need to seek knowledge of self outside of the classroom.

AW:  What are your core beliefs?

S:  I’m a Garveyite so I follow the core beliefs of Marcus Garvey. Black/African people must unite globally. Black men and Black women must empower each other. The system of White Supremacy wants to see us divided and confused because it’s obvious that we are the original people of the planet Earth, and when we move to control or own destiny our exploitation will cease.

AW:  If you could meet one person, dead or alive, who would it be?

S: Dr. John Henrik Clarke because I enjoy watching his lectures and he spent his life educating his self on African/Black history and spreading what he learned.

AW:  What is the most attractive thing about a woman?

S:  I love Black women. Black women must love African features, the texture of hair, color of skin (all shades of Black are beautiful), the shape of the nose and the shape of the beautiful lips. Black women have beautifully shaped bodies, beautiful curves, beautiful hips and thighs. My biggest turn on is a Black woman who has knowledge of self and who truly loves herself and her features.

AW:  What are your biggest turn offs?

S:  My biggest turn off is someone who doesn’t seek knowledge, wisdom or understanding and doesn’t want to gain knowledge of self.

AW:  What makes you a king?

S: I’m a Black king because I will always stand beside the Black queens and we’ll uplift and empower each other.

Avoid Fashion Faux Pas

One Saturday night, I decided to hang out with a male friend of mine, and it just so happened that he brought along a couple of his friends as well. I didn’t mind, I knew everybody in the group so it was cool. I wore a cute plaid shirt, some shorts and tennis shoes. This had been my outfit of choice all day. After just riding around, talking, and listening to music, they dropped me off back home. I stood outside the car and said my good byes, chatting just a little bit more before I went inside. When I walked through the door of my apartment, I realized that my shirt was unbuttoned and my breast was out. An immediate sense of embarrassment ran through me as I hoped they didn’t notice or didn’t think any funny business was going on in the back seat. There are common things that women wear that can turn into an embarrassing fashion faux pas. Don’t be like me! Here’s some of the most common that I have found and some tips on how to avoid them.

1.  Ill-fitting clothes

ill fitting 1

You can avoid this by trying on your clothes before you buy them.  Look in a full sized mirror and be sure that they aren’t too loose or too tight.  This way you can avoid a button popping open or, in my case being so big that they just slide out.

2.  Panty Lines

ill fitting 2

This seems like an obvious one, but all too often so many women walk around with their excessive panty lines showing.  It’s nice to know that you wear panties.  But honestly, it’s just not something we need to see.  This can be avoid by three ways: a) Wear looser pants/skirts/dresses! b) Wear a thong or seamless panties c) Wear thicker materials where panty lines are less prone to show through.

3.  Showing Crack

ill fitting 3

This is just nasty and nobody wants to see booty (unless we’re at the strip club).  The best way to avoid this is to wear a belt.  I know some of us have small waists and/or a big bottom.  You may need to wear a camisole underneath your shirt and tuck it in.  That way even if your pants slip a little bit, there is a shirt there to keep you from being exposed.

4.  The Cameltoe

ill fitting 4

A cameltoe is basically a vaginal weggie.  It brings unnecessary and unflattering attention.  Avoid this by a) not wearing leggings as pants! and b) just wear something more loose and doesn’t ride up your crotch.

 

Music Monday: Maimouna Youssef- “We’re Already Royal”

A few nights ago, I was up late watching a program on Howard University’s television Network, WHUT. This is a talk show, and on this episode they were talking about music, and when they played this one video I fell in love. As you probably know, Royals by Lorde has received a lot of negative feedback from the African-American community for her seemingly stereotypical lyrics referring to our culture. While she condescended black culture, she no doubt displayed her desire to be apart of it, and proved herself to be ignorant of the African American struggle. It’s as if she thinks we are just materialistic and have all of these things, we in reality we are largely faced with poverty and unequal opportunities. And although people argue that she wasn’t talking about black people…. we all know the common stereotypes of Cadillac and gold teeth. And after watching several of her interviews, she even said that she was influenced by hip hop, which is undoubtedly black culture. With that being said, this talk introduced me to an artist named Maimouna Youssef. This fabulous young woman did a cover to Royals called “We’re Already Royal.” She touches on all of the topics that those ignorant to our culture, identity, and collective struggle seem to not understand. Check the video out below.

30 Day Fitness Challenge- Week One

I’ve finally finished the first week of my 30 day fitness challenge. I came up with this challenge to really RE jumpstart my healthy lifestyle. I’ve been in a transition stage in my life, and I figured now was the right time to start becoming the person that I’m striving to be. I admit that there were times this week where I just didn’t feel like doing it. But when you really want to achieve something then you just suck it up and do it and remember that the rewards are worth the sacrifice. Here’s what I did every morning this week. They are pretty easy, simple workouts, yet pretty intense. It’s a great way to start any fitness journey for a beginner. DISCLAIMER: ONLY YOU KNOW WHAT YOUR BODY CAN HANDLE. THIS IS JUST WORKS FOR ME. I AM NOT TELLING YOU TO DO THESE WORK OUTS. AGAIN, THIS IS WHAT WORKS FOR ME.

Day 1:
Jog .5 miles
10 eight counts
one minute plank

Day 2:
Jog .5 miles
10 eight counts
10 mountain climbers
one minute plank

Day 3:
Jog .5 miles
10 eight counts
15 mountain climbers
10 squats
one minute plank

Day 4:
Jog .5 miles
10 eight counts
20 mountain climbers
15 squats
one minute plank

Day 5
Jog .5 miles
10 eight counts
25 mountain climbers
20 squats
one minute plank

Day 6
Jog .5 miles

Day 7
Rest

Choosing to be Positive

A few days ago, I found myself overwhelmed with frustration and irritability. The day had started out so well! I made a conscious choice and effort to be positive and happy. I went to a job interview and sang and danced in the car all the way there. I got lost on the way but refused to get stressed or angry. And on top of that, they loved me (but I didn’t take the job). They could feel the positivity oozing out of me. But by the time I got back home, I felt the irritability set in. I made the decision to be happy and positive, but it seemed as if I didn’t get to make the choice on if I wanted to be irritated. Before I knew it, it was just there. And to be honest, I think it was because that wasn’t the type of job I was looking for, but I had been so excited to get it, and it turned out to be not what I wanted. Things in my life are not going the way that I planned at this time, and every once in a while I just get angry and fed up. And I think this was just one of those moments. Sometimes, most times, things just don’t go as we plan. We create these great expectations and visions in our heads, and they just don’t unfold the way that we want them to or in the time frame in which we expected. Then we get angry, frustrated, or irritated and sometimes take those feelings out on other people. That is the time when we need to realize that although things aren’t going quite as planned, we need to calm down, have patience, continue to be positive, and keep pushing towards our goals and visualizations. After all, the law of attraction says like attracts like. And we don’t want to bring any negativity to us. So let’s not be Negative Nancys. It can be hard to get rid of the frustration and negativity, but just how we make a conscious effort to be happy and positive, we can choose whether or not to be frustrated and negative. Even if those emotions have already settled in, you can change them. Whether it be a problem right in front of you that seems unsolvable or life in general, don’t let it overwhelm you. We control our emotions. They do not control us. When I found myself frustrated to tears after dealing with a few minor problems, I decided I didn’t want to feel that way. I wanted to be calm and relaxed. So, I made the effort to calm myself down. Here’s a few of the things that I did and always work for me:

1. Take a hot shower. The shower has always been my retreat when I’m feeling angry, depressed, frustrated, overwhelmed, etc. When I take a nice hot shower, I try to just focus on how the water feels as it hits my body. Sometimes I even play a little Erykah Badu to help set the mood. It’s very relaxing and I’m able to clear my mind.

2. Nurture myself. This has got to be one of the most important things. Sometimes we just forget to really take care of ourselves. I like to just oil my hair and put lotion on right after I get out the shower. To just run your fingers through your hair and really be intimate (not sexually, but if you want to, hey, do you boo) with yourself and appreciate yourself eases your mind.

3. Drink hot herbal tea with honey. For me tea just is just soothing and calming.

After I do all of these things, I have a clear mind and I’m able to see how small the problem really was. Then I can just work to resolve it. Don’t waste time or energy being frustrated. It’s just not good, and in reality, there’s usually always a solution.

Easy & Healthy Dinner Recipe

Last night I was feeling very exhausted and just didn’t feel like cooking. But I was hungry, and if I wasn’t going to feed myself then who was? Well here’s an easy lemon pepper tilapia recipe for dinner. I also sautéed asparagus with a little bit of garlic sat. The fish took about 15 minutes to prep and 20 to cook.

Ingredients
8 pieces of tilapia (or however much you want)
Canola oil
Onion
Green pepper
Lemon Juice
1.5 tbsp. Margarine (melted)
Garlic salt
Lemon Pepper
Seasoning salt
Pepper
Old Bay

Instructions:

1. Preheat your oven to 375 F
2. While oven is warming up line a baking dish with foil and coat the foil with canola oil.
3. Cut onions and green peppers to your desire. I decided to dice mine. It doesn’t matter.
4. Melt butter and margarine in the microwave.
5. Pat dry the fish and coat each piece on each side in margarine.
6. Coat each piece of fish on each side with lemon juice.
7. Season to taste. I actually ended up not using the Old Bay after a few pieces.
8. Put the fish in the baking dish and cover with foil.
9. Bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

The ingredients on top and how it will look before you cover with foil and bake

The ingredients on top and how it will look before you cover with foil and bake

Fresh out the oven

Fresh out the oven