Monthly Archives: November 2019

Don’t Yell Fire…

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Don’t Yell Fire…

Hey everyone!!! I know, I’ve been ghost for a minute but there has been some drama in my life. Let me explain.

About 2 weeks ago, my house caught on fire. Me, Avery and my mom were home. It started outside at the bottom of my porch steps. My mkm and I were face timing with my brother and she starts saying she smells smoke. I had just finished heating up something. So, I make sure the stove isn’t on. I start to ser a little smoke but I ignore it and keep talking to my brother. Then I get a phone call from my girlfriend who lives across the Street from me. She asks if my house is on fire because her mom who lives on the other side of her building with a view of ky house told her it is. I laugh and say “Girl,no”. Then I look at my front door and see thick black smoke seeping in. I yell for my mom to dress as I get me and Avery dressed. My mom is freaking out and yelling “Wheres the baby?! Get the baby!!!” I’m yelling back that I’m dressing him and for her to just get dressed. She keeps yelling about the baby’s whereabouts and I’m ignoring her. Meanwhile the fire department is busting down my door as I’m naked holding a half naked baby. My mom runs out of the house with them and yelling for me to hurry up. I still don’t know who called the firemen because it definitely wasn’t us. Finally I hit the door and all I can see is smoke and the fire men. Avery’s face is covered with a blanket. There are like 10 more fire men waiting outside to come in. They keep asking if anyone else is inside and I keep yelling ” The cat!!!! Where tf is the cat?!?!?!” No one answers me. My mom and I head through the alley way that leads to the house in front of mine( I live on a poorly built block.) Almost all of my neighbors are standing and watching.

For some reason, I feel embarrassed that they’re all watching me yell for my mom to follow me to the front. She was about to get arrested because she refused to move from the house and the killer black smoke.They all looked at Avery who had no coat or shoes on. I’m in shock. I just stand there while Avery squirms in my arms. My mom sees him and she loses her shit about him not wearing a coat or shoes. Then we fight about it. My neighbor’s husband brings me a blanket for Avery. And then I don’t remember a whole lot after that. Again…shock.

The next thing we were on our way to a hotel paid for by the Red Cross. Amani wasn’t home when the fire happened and the worst thing was having to tell her that the only home she’s ever known was no more. She took it fine at first but once we got on the van and started driving away she broke down. I couldn’t do anything but hold her. We spent that weekend in a hotel in the neighborhood my mom grew up in. Then we went to our housing program’s offices and we alwere put in a different hotel. Because my mom has a housing program, we can move once we find a place. Then social services will pay for the first and last month’s rent as well as security.

In retrospect, I’m kind of sad about losing the house. Over the almost decade we’ve been there alot of sad and awful things have happened. My biological mother and my cat died in my living room, Hurricane Sandy left me with a little PTSD and just a string of other ” Good Times”-esque events. It is not lost on my part that we are still very blessed that we are comfortable and doing life as normal as possible. But, we needed a change. Since my mom has been better, she’s been wanting a fresh start in a new home. I also know she procrastinates on major things so maybe this was the little push we needed. Amani is still in the same school though now I have to get her via MTA. We wake at 5 and the ride is an hour and a half,split between two trains. Avery comes with me both taking Amani to school and picking her up. Mom still has dialysis at the hospital 3x a week but she has transportation provided to her.

This was a terrible time for a fire. Amani turned twelve years old o. The 23rd and Avery will be a year on the 5th. Plus, Thanksgiving and Christmas . I was stoked about Avery’s first winter holidays and now it’s the furthest thing from my mind. I’m kind of bummed that it’s not gonna pan out the way I planned it in my head. But what’s that saying? When you make plans, God laughs? Wel, He’s getting quite the chuckle off of me. Friends, I have a request of you. Amani’s school provides her with a free MetroCard to get back and forth to school. I am not afforded that luxury and have had to schlep me and Avery on my dime…or nickel? I would appreciate it if you all would donate some change our way to be used on Metro Cards for me. I realize its the holidays but you could donate as little as $2.75, which is the cost of one fare. I have both PayPal and Cash App for your convenience. Just DM me so I know where to look and confirm I received it. Thank you jn advance and happy holidays!!!

My Hair Regimen 2019

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My Hair Regimen 2019

Hey, natural moms!! Raise your hand if you’re like me and neglect your hair because you’re a mom…I’ll wait…………Uh huh, exactly as I thought, most of you put all your energy into child rearing and forget about you. I’m with you,girl.

With Amani self care went out the window. I was raised by a single mom who worked and neglected her social life a lot. So to prove I was a good mom, I did the same. A year into that, I was like “Nah, I have to breathe. So I started figuring out how to make myself feel better when I can’t go out. So I went natural in 2013. I started off really strong dedicating alot of money and time to getting my hair in check.

Fast forward and I have Avery,who is a HANDFUL and I don’t have time for hair. But when I do try to tame the bird’s nest on my head, I keep the same regimen as I did 6 years ago. As tight as my budget for myself is, I managed to get a couple new hair products,some I’ve used faithfully and a couple new things. I’m a product junkie, so definitely tell me what you’re using on your and how you use it.

Pre poo(prepping the hair with product before wash. This step makes the hair more pliable for washing.

I usually use use a cheap conditioner by VO5 for pre poo but I think I have found a holy grail with Creme of Nature’s Clay and Charcoal prepp treatment. I’ve heard good things about the detoxifying benefits of charcoal so I wanted in. OMG, it immediately softens the curls before the hair is even clean. It goes on smooth and has a slight detergent smell but I loved it. I section my hair into six and apply the product generously to each section.

Then I cover with a plastic cap and headscarf for ten minutes. Enough time to make sure Avery isn’t destroying something or annoying his sister.

Washing:

I rinse out the pre poo, then apply a shampoo. I love ORS’s Monoi Oil Anti Breakage Leave In cream. It doubles as a deep conditioner, which is the next step. I never used the shampoo or conditioner that’s in the same product line. I like good slip in my shampoo and this shampoo has meh slip. It is sooo hard to squeeze out the conditioner from the bottle because it’s really thick. It should have been in a jar. But just after shampooing, I noticed less breakage as promised. Because of my neglect I had a lot of breakage. Yes, I’d use this shampoo and conditioner again.

Conditioning:

Because of aforementioned breakage, I needed a protein conditioner. It helps with breakage by strengthening the hair shaft. I normally use ORS Hair Mayo but I needed something powerful so I turned to Aphogee’s 2 Step Protein Treatment. It’s watery in consistency which apparently is good for my low porosity hair but ut hardens in the hair fast so apply quick ly. I left it on for 10 minutes and it took quite a bit of rinsing to make sure it was out. I don’t think I’ll use it again, the hardening of my hair was not cool.

I applied the ORS Monoi Oil Anti Breakage conditioner(see previous picture)because protein conditioners really dry your hair out and you need to replace that moisture. Im not going to lie, I love this line because the packaging is my favorite color but the products are very good. I love that there are no overwhelming scents and it’s not expensive. I use a lot of products on my hair and I don’t want competing smells on it.

I usually leave conditioner on my hair for around 30 minutes. Its covered in a plastic cap and head scarf. More time to check in with kids, scroll Twitter, or look up new Pinterest crockpot recipes. I have this multi tasking thing IN.THE.BAG.

The Big Finish:

After I rinse out conditioner, i add a leave in conditioner. Creme of Nature Argain Oil line is primo. Ive used the shampoo, intense conditioner,and curlxl creme but the leave in is my favorite. It makes the hair shiny, has a clean scent and the oil keeps it moisturized. It’s a liquid spray that yoh must shake to activate.

After that, I apply my oils which is usually Jamaican Black castor oil, extra virgin olive oil, or coconut oil. The blend I’m currently using is JBCO, EVOO,and tea tree. All of them have excellent hair benefits including thickening of hair, antifungal properties, and moisture retention. If I’m not going to twist my hair right away, then I make six large cornrows and cover in my headscarf when I sleep.

I know this routine seems like a lot but your hair needs love and time and patience, just like your kids. If you have other methods of hair care, I’m all ears. Find me on IG, Facebook, and Twitter.Until next week!!

October Reads and November TBR

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October Reads and November TBR

Hey,bookworms! We are in one of my favorite months. Why is it my favorite month,you ask? Well, Amani will be 12 years old on the 23rd nd my closest friend’s son will be turning 4 years old. He and my daughter are birthday twins. Plus, on Thanksgiving Day, that same friend’s other son will be 8 years old. That means lots of celebrating and plenty of food and desserts. Now, let’s talk books.

My Fall reading TBR is pretty ambitious. Especially since, I threw in a+700 page behemoth that I started like a year ago. I still haven’t gotten a quarter of a way through it. I LOVE a big book and it irks me that I haven’t finished this one yet. Here’s what I did finish in October:

THE WATER DANCER BY TANEHISI COATES

This book was sooo good!!! It follows a slave named Hi(ram) whose mother is taken away from him as a child. Hi has a special ability to remember every thing down to the smallest detail. This journey takes him to the Underground where he works with Harriet Tubman herself. She also possesses the unique gift Hi has. She helps aid in his getaway but the journey takes him back to his owner who is also his father. Through his trials Hi learns to hone his gift and use it to reconnect people while trying to remember his own mother.

There are sooo many gems in this book. Coates brings a unique perspective on slavery by adding a magical realism twist. Not only does Hi witness classism among white people but he gets a glimpse at women’s suffrage and the plight of Native American people as well. Though the story of slavery has been told MANY times, Coates holds his own fresh take on a dark time that we are still dealing with today.

THE TEN THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY BY ALIX E. HARROW

This book was unique in how it used time travel to tell the story of January. She finds a Door one day that leads to a different time and a different wirld and decides to pursue finding more as a way to deal with her father’s constant absence and the death of her mother. January grows up with a rich benefactor who is her father’s employer and even though on the surface he seems like a great guy, January doesn’t tell him about the Door or the book she found about Doors. There are characters that are clearly the bad guys but I enjoy how Mr. Locke., January’s guardian, is walking a thin line between a greedy bad guy and a parent who was too overprotective and misguided. January’s own father was not honest with her either and it drives a wedge between her dad and her. Overall, this book was beautifully written and the characters well developed. The on thing that kept me from giving it 5 stars is the ending felt a little confusing and I’ll definitely have to read the book again to properly understand how Locke became Locke and his motives for closing Doors but other than that, I loved it. I could see there being a 2nd part,perhaps a prequel to delve into Locke and if so I’d read it.

What I noticed about both reads is that they both discuss subjects that hav been written about a million times. However, they both provide a unique story with characters that show real growth and are relatable. These were both e ARCs but because I really enjoyed them so much,I will be purchasing physical copies.

NOVEMBER TBR:

Olive,Again by Elizabeth Strout

If You Want To Make God Laugh by Bianca Marais

Dear Girls by Ali Wong

A Man In Full by Tom Tom Wolfe (that +700 page behemoth I mentioned earlier)

Tell me, what are your November TBRs? Have you read any of these? Happy reading!!!