Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Every given opportunity, I visit the Garden of Peace memorial gardens in downtown Boston (pictured below). It calls to me everytime I walk by and I can't help but stop for a moment and remember those who have lost their lives as a result of homicide.
I pray that you never experience this excruciating pain.
For those who have, my heart goes out to you and yours.
*For more information, please visit: http://www.gardenofpeacememorial.org/
*Click here to read the poem I wrote on the night we lost Isaiah.
*Sharing a post written by vchelle on the same night. She only met him one time. I think you will understand the impact he had on others. Click here.
*You can review the FOX news coverage on Isaiah, please click here. Within weeks after his death, the network news predictably moved on to the next "big story". His unsolved murder, however, lingers on in the minds of his family and loved ones. I only pray that his case will soon be solved and bring some closure to all those who loved and cherished him.
*Post-thought: Although it is painful to lose our loved ones, it's definitely a reality and part of life. As a child, I would always look at the adults and wonder how death seemed so acceptable to them. I now know it is never easy, but after the grief, we do get to a place of acceptance and peace. Thanks again for your kind words.
*Update: An arrest has been since made for the person responsible for murdering Isaiah. We now anxiously await the outcome of a trial.
Monday, March 30, 2009
I have always been intrigued by Mother Nature and how she presents herself at every corner of the world. I think very deeply about small things like "some people have seasons; others do not".
I had an email exchange with Lisa from Lisa's Chaos earlier today. She described the weather there in Wisconsin (USA) for me. It was so exciting to hear what her region was like as spring approaches. (I know, my nerdiness is showing.)
Anyhow, I started thinking...why not ask you?
What's it like in your neck of the woods? I can't wait to live vicariously through you all.
To participate, please leave a link or a comment below.
My Inspirational Monday post featured photos from this past Friday.
Below, check out more photos from my neck of the woods taken this past weekend.
Sunday, March 29, 2009
I drove to the city and looked up. Instead of noticing all the exquisite architecture surrounding me, all I could look at was the sky.
I drove home and waited at the bus stop for my daughter. All I could do while waiting was look up at the sky.
The bulbs are bursting out the ground. The buds are appearing on the branches and shrubs. The birds are soaring a little bit slower as if not in a rush to get out of the cold. And my eyes keep beckoning me to look up at the sky.
The sky is a little bluer these days. The clouds, a little fluffier. They dance so gracefully across the sky.
Children are outside playing. Their laughter intoxicating. People are a bit more friendly, I realise as I look up at the sky.
There's something in the air and it's taking over.
Mother Nature is changing into Spring.
*Inspirational Monday is the brainchild of vchelle over at Operation You. Everyone is invited to stop by and post your links of inspiration.
*Have an Inspirational Monday !!!
Friday, March 27, 2009
*There are no polar bears living at the South Pole?
*WWF was once used as an acronym for World Wrestling Federation (go Batista!) until of course the World Wildlife Fund sued Vince McMahon and his inherited wrestling empire and won. Wrestling is now WWE.
*On Saturday, March 28, 2009, the World Wildlife Fund is sponsoring Earth Hour. It's a global event wherein we are asked to turn off our lights for just 1 hour starting at 8:30 pm to collectively make a statement about climate change and saving our planet. Won't you join us?
*Have a Conscious Friday.
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
2. My last musical: Menopause -The Celebration of Women and The Change. I met one of my college friends in Orlando for some much needed "girl time". I hadn't laughed that hard in a long time...and we were amongst the youngest in the crowd. If you ever get the chance to go see it in your neck of the woods, it's well worth it.
3. My last ballet: Cinderella. Thanks to my daughter's godparents, we had some unforgettable mommy-daughter time at the Boston Ballet. My daughter's been hooked on ballet ever since.
4. The Obama side effect: At one point, there were 3 Black female attorneys in the office (and that was plenty for our county in Florida). We were all different ages, heights, sizes, skin colour, personalities, etc. etc...you get the point. Lucky for me, I was easily distinguished as Rasta girl. But people in the office would always, without fail, call my other 2 friends by each other's names. It was almost amusing to me that they looked nothing alike and people just could not get their names correct. Over time, 2 of us left the office for other career opportunities leaving only one black female attorney in the office. After the Presidential election, a white male colleague who has known her for quite some time approached her and asked, "Has anyone ever told you that you look like Michelle Obama?". Hmmmmm...really guy??? I'm still trying to process that one.
Monday, March 23, 2009
Waste Not, Want Not
I shall not throw on the floor
the stuff I cannot eat
cause many hungry little ones
would think it quite a treat.
Tis wistful waste make woeful want
and I will live to say
how I wish I had that little crumb
I once had thrown away
*Just noticed that this is my 100th post. Whoo-hoo !!!
Sunday, March 22, 2009
Today, we baked our usual Williams Sonoma recipes: pound cake for the hubby, and chocolate chip cookies for my daughter. Feeling brave, we thought we'd try a new recipe for oatmeal raisin cookies, my favourite. Give thanks to Christina from Soul Aperture, a bona fide culinary genius who was gracious enough to share her recipe with me. I can proudly report that upon taking the first bite into those cookies, I know that her genius knows no bounds. They are absolutely delicious.
Well, wish I could rave about them longer but I gotta go watch my race. Business is about to pick up. Go get 'em boys!!!
Saturday, March 21, 2009
"Are you ready?" she shouted from her room within minutes.
"Yes. May I come in?" I replied.
Slowly, I opened the door and immediately noticed the perfectly set table. Maybe not perfectly set according to formal British etiquette standard but it was perfect for us, perfect for this moment. We took our seats at the table. With her American Girl doll, Katherine Rose, by her side, we had our first tea party!
We used the fine china tea set she received as a baby gift from the realtor who sold us our first home. We found it on the kitchen counter when we first walked through the doors with baby in tow. I have kept it hidden away for 7 1/2 years, only breaking it out once in a while to show my daughter and tell her about how she got it. But last night, we used it for the first time.
She carefully picked up the tiny teapot and poured us each a cup of chamomile tea. The extra tea was stored in a NUMI glass teapot I received as a birthday gift from one of my BFFs. In the middle of the table laid a glass dispenser filled with local raw orange blossom honey we picked up while on vacation. We each had a teacup, saucer, and a small plate. A small plate?, you ask. Yes, of course. No self-respecting Brit would have tea without crumpets. Only thing, we didn't have crumpets. We had whole wheat toast topped with butter and a choice of Wedgwood fine raspberry preserve or homemade strawberry rhubarb spread, cut into perfect little squares. Oh yeah...we partied until we finished every last drop of tea then we went to bed.
As I laid next to my daughter in bed, I realised that she just started to play with dolls in a different way again.
The night before, for the first time, she made a bed for Katherine Rose right next to hers. She changed her into bedtime clothes and covered her in a doll quilt I made years ago. She looked and me and said, "Mummy, doesn't she look comfortable?" I started to respond but she instructed me to whisper because "she is sleeping". I could feel her excitement. Then I saw it...that light in her eyes. She wanted to know why my cousin who is a carpenter had not yet delivered the handmade doll bed she ordered. So, we called him and they discussed their business arrangement. Then she calmly went to sleep.
Staring at her beautiful face, I began to reminisce. As a little girl, I couldn't wait to wake up on Saturday mornings to play dolls with my sister. We would make doll clothes out of any thing we could find, my grandmother's scraps or even our socks. Yeah, got a lot of beatings for cutting up them socks. At other times, when I spent Saturdays alone with my grandmother, she would indulge me and make me a doll dress on her sewing machine. Oh how I cherished those dresses. Then one day, in some unforeseen, unexplainable way, I outgrew playing with dolls.
Now, this morning I woke up and I couldn't stop thinking about the tea party. I mean, I have long stopped playing with dolls. I am going to tell you a secret but you have to promise not to tell. After all, I wouldn't want to damage my reputation. So, do you promise? Ok, here goes nothing. I accept that I like to play with dolls. I accept that I like tea parties. My only regret? My doll, who my sistren purchased for me last week, did not make it to the festivities. But, she is on her way in the mail...
One Love, Se'Lah
Friday, March 20, 2009
Thursday, March 19, 2009
After putting her to bed tonight, I sat down to watch hot ass Clark Kent (another of my boy toys) dart around Smallville saving people from the most unrealistic situations. And there it was...another "Above the Influence", anti-marijuana advert.
I started to think. (I know, here we go again).
When was the last time I saw an "anti-cocaine" advert on TV here in the USA?
Can you remember?
I found this recent one on the web but I surely have never seen it on TV. I distinctly remember there once was a "war on drugs".
*This ad was made by Chino Rockwell:
Wednesday, March 18, 2009
*How would you describe your favourite colour to a blind person?
Tuesday, March 17, 2009
I have been a bit pensive lately. Wondering if I am teaching my daughter enough about her "Blackness". After all, she scared the crap out of me when she came home the other day and asked,
"Am I brown or Am I tan?"
Just when I was preparing the script in my mind, she came home with this.
*Can't you see it's a brown leprechaun? ;-)
They are very tricky little people, you know.
HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY!!!
*Visit Montserrat: http://www.visitmontserrat.com/
*Info on Montserrat: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montserrat
Monday, March 16, 2009
My inspiration? Spending time with my family and exploring nature. I kept staring at the ice formations on the other side of the river bank. My brains were twisted trying to imagine how they were formed. Then, my daughter pulled this root from the water and said "Mommy look".
Sunday, March 15, 2009
Friday, March 13, 2009
This Conscious Friday is for all of those touched by (pre)cancer, whether pursuing treatment naturally, herbally, holistically, medically, or otherwise (and to their loved ones too). Believe.
One Love, Se'Lah
*For an uplifting anecdote, please visit, Operation You.
*Experience the 3.day.
*Enjoy Burning Spear: Walk
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
Today, I am conflicted. U2 is playing a private "invitation only" concert in Boston and I am not there. Obviously someone forgot to put my name on the VIP list. There were no tickets on sale. The venue was kept completely secret until all promotional tickets were distributed by the local radio stations. BONO will be soooo close to me. And I am not there :-(
Needless to say, I needed to take a moment to pause and reflect and thought I'd also share this with you.
It was awesome weather last weekend. On Saturday, we took a walk on the beach.
On Sunday, we took a walk through the park.
On Monday, it snowed.
Tuesday was a blur...but I do remember that the snow started to melt.
And today, it's raining.
A curious thing happened though. I was driving home and I started noticing the beauty of the raindrops on the tree branches. Suspending there, momentarily, not wanting to let go and hit the ground but also not wanting to remain above ground level. I was mesmerized. I jumped out of the car with camera in hand.
My husband kept looking at me strange saying "I don't know what you are taking a picture of". I was too involved to be explaining right away because I may miss the shot of that very moment which will never be repeated as long as I live.
A car rolled up and beeped (because I was blocking traffic). To my defense, it's a very wide private road. Any smart driver approaching a car that is not moving can assume the car is not moving and veer around it.
I returned to the car when I was done and exclaimed "Spring is coming". With furrowed eyebrow, he glanced over at me. I said "there are buds on the end of the branches". He says, "I know, I've seen it for weeks as I walk by everyday". Well hot damn, thanks for telling me.
In any event, I finally parked the car. Still in my own world, I came out with camera in hand. My husband looked at me stooping beside the bushes and whispered "Paparazzi" as I took my last photo. I couldn't help but laugh at myself.
Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Every day, as I take a moment to come back to centre, I can't help but feel for those less fortunate. It breaks my heart to think of their suffering and how little is being done on their behalf to make their situations better.
*Please have a listen to Peter Tosh: Fools Die
*I leave you for now with this awesome article I read on Operation You blog: Don't Worry, Be Happy.
One Love, Se'Lah
Monday, March 9, 2009
With the drastic downturn in the economy and the consequential soar in food prices, coupled with wars, droughts and unfavourable natural conditions, the health and lives of MILLIONS of children are threatened on a daily basis.
Although many people may associate starving children with Ethiopia, it is most definitely a worldwide epidemic...and within the very borders of the prosperous United States, where people throw away food without reservation every single day, there are many children starving...to death.
So the next time you ask your child if he/she is hungry, and they respond "I'm starving", think twice about the power and reality of those words.
Indifference is not an option. Let's join in making hunger and poverty history.
*For more facts, please visit the following sites:
Saturday, March 7, 2009
1. She touched the water.
2. She chased the birds.
3. We searched for the horizon.
4. She ran on the burms.
5. We made a gift for a lucky person taking a walk on the beach.
Friday, March 6, 2009
Thursday, March 5, 2009
I've been thinking about this for a while and I realised that this practise is permitted in part because the value of the "lower class" and illegal immigrants by society at large is *so* incredibly low that people can now be treated as chattel.
*If you suspect someone may be a victim of human trafficking, please call the Trafficking Information and Referral Hotline:
*UN Launches Blue Heart Campaign: http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/268585
*Join the Blue Heart Campaign: http://www.unodc.org/blueheart/join-us.html
Wednesday, March 4, 2009
The teacher then announced, "Today, we are having a mystery reader" and instructed them to all sit facing the comfy chair in the corner.
My daughter, noticeably the only black child in the classroom, immediately said, "My mommy REALLY wants to be a guest reader one day!" She still had no idea I was even present.
And then the teacher introduced me !!!
As much as I was completely fulfilled with this priceless moment, I am cognizant that there were several reasons this trip to her classroom today was important. Having recently relocated to this overwhelmingly predominantly white neighborhood, I did not want my daughter to feel completely disconnected. Although she is quite adaptable and resilient, I did not want her to feel that her mother abandoned her without representation. I did not want to reinforce already misinformed stereotypes about Black people not being involved in their children's education. Plus, I just started a new job, and being the only black attorney, did not want to appear to be the slacker vis-a-vis my white counterparts.
But my daughter would often come home and mention how the other kids' moms were the guest reader in her classroom. I kept hearing the yearning in her voice, rather than just the words coming from her mouth, and it tore at my very heart.
So yesterday, I approached my supervisor and told her that I must become more visible in my daughter's classroom. She, also a "minority" who is also a stay-at-home-mom recently returning to the workforce, completely understood my predicament and was extremely supportive !!! It turns out that my job has been completely accommodating with child issues, way beyond my imagination.
It took only a few minutes for the teacher and I to arrange my "mystery reader" visit today and I made sure to mention that it would be a complete surprise to my daughter.
I must say, it was everything I hoped it would be. And I did it all before I began my work day today.
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
I have waited for this day for a long, long, loooooong time. The release of U2's new album - NO LINE ON THE HOR I ZON. I did not read or listen to any reviews because I did not want anyone to spoil the experience for me or influence my ultimate opinion. I wanted to judge it for myself.
Aren't I glad I waited??? My friends all know that I absolutely L.O.V.E. Bono. This album, however, made me realize that I absolulely L.O.V.E. U2 as a band as well, separate and distinct from Bono. Their music touches my very soul!!!
Now, my friends also know that I have one child: my beautiful, artistic, eclectic, loving, daughter. She loves all forms of the arts and crafts. She plays indiscriminately with American Girl dolls, Brio trains, Legos, and her new obsession - Bakugan. She fits no mold and is very unique and unorthodox in her being. I love her freedom of spirit, which is seemingly boundless and often relentless.
To ensure full enjoyment of my new U2 album today and to appease my daughter...okay, okay, fine, you got me...I bought the child off. Her afterschool programme was having the first day of their Scholastic Book Fair today. It has been a highlight in our family since my daughter started school at age 3. It's the day when she buys her new books. Today, she got, with little protest from her mother, the Official Bakugan Handbook and has not put it down yet.
I mean, do you seriously believe it is just coincidence that the Scholastic Book Fair and the release of U2's new album occurred on the same day? It's almost as if some one, some thing, some higher power, is intervening in our lives...I guess some may call it Fate.
Well, I now am fatefully and faithfully listening to the strumming of guitar strings by The Edge, the bass guitar of Adam Clayton, the drums and percussion of Larry Mullen Jr. and the distinct, soothing, piercing vocals of BONO.
One Love, Se'Lah
*For information on U2, please visit http://www.u2.com/.
*Fight extreme poverty and AIDS:
Join the One Campaign at http://www.one.org/.
Buy (RED) at http://www.joinred.com/.
*For Freedom! For Burma! Take Action! http://www.burmacampaign.org.uk/.
*For your listening pleasure, here's U2 with "Magnificent":
Monday, March 2, 2009
Sunday, March 1, 2009
So it is my favourite day of the week once again...race day. I haven't felt butterflies like this since the days when I was bent over in blocks, my fingers feeling the plushiness of the track searching for that momentary comfort, waiting for the sound of the starting gun.
Each week, I come to this place. I tingle inside as I wait to hear the most famous words in motorsports: "Gentlemen, start your engines!" And then, the engines rumble like a jet engine revving up for take off and I am ready once again for the thrill ride. Yes, I *love* NASCAR.
Although my hubby may not fully appreciate my vice, he is rewarded every race day by me personally...it's sort of a blatant bribe to leave me alone during my race, unless he is commenting positively on the race. Let's just say it's a mutually beneficial arrangement. This week he will be enjoying a new version of vegetarian chili. Mama always said, the easiest way to a man's heart is through his belly.
Gotta go now because the green flag is about to drop in a few.
*Race Update: So...Smoke didn't win...but my other favourite driver, Wild Thing/Rowdy Busch, pulled another rabbit out of his arse...qualified on the pole (1st place), started last place due to engine change on his car, and won in front of his hometown. He becomes the first driver to win the pole and go on to win the race at Las Vegas, not even taking into account the fact that he actually started from the rear of the field.