Monday, June 28, 2010

Picture of the Day

11 months locing

Tuesday, June 22, 2010
-Is that who I think it is? 
-Yes it is
-But her hair is so healthy looking and mature...let's not even talk about the length. I wonder what she's using...
-Well let's find out

Sorry y'all but I had to add a dialogue. Funny I was at a family cookout and someone came up to me and asked me if I've been growing them for 3 or 4 years. I smiled and said no, merely 11 months. So the consensus is that my hair is growing real quick and people want to know what I've been using. Well I don't know what's causing the growth exactly but it has to be one or all of these substances

-Fish Oil supplements: Flax Omega 3-6-9
-Bioluxe Wheat Protein shampoo
-Vitamin E oil
-Aloe Vera

I have a feeling it's the fish oil supplements. I've been taking them for years now and my hair grows faster whenever I consistently take the supplements. Anyway, instead of posting about how much I love my hair, I want to show my regular hair maintenance regimen.

So first let me start by saying that I have a major dandruff problem. I use Top Brass but it's not helping me anymore so I think that means farewell. You know what P.O's me even more, is that the dandruff are patches on the crown of my head. Like really? Why it got to try to embarrass me like that? They're all over the front of my hairline along with the 3 random branches of white hair.
You know when this started (the dandruff not the white hairs) I got burned really bad from a relaxer 6 years ago and ever since then I've had these dry patches on my hairline. So weird. I'm still looking for a solution for them. In the meantime, I use the products below to decrease the visibility of my dandruff. By the way. The hairspray bottle contains water and vitamin E oil...

Looks clean right? Ok. Well two days later MEZANMI! JEZI-MARI-JOSEF! my scalp was burning from itches. It was a disaster. What caused this? Raw shea butter  y'all. I thought I was doing my scalp a favor and BAM! More dandruff or peeling of the scalp. So I had to wash my hair AGAIN and since it was my 11th month, I decided to re-twist them and show them off

And viola

Alright well that's all folks! My last loc-ing update will be next month (A YEAR) and I think I'm going to join the locers on youtube and continuing sharing my journey there.

P.S. Does anybody know what natural regimen I can do to cure my dandruff problem?

One Is The Magic #

Monday, June 21, 2010
No hay nadie mas que yo, 
Uno es el numero magico
En vida y en muerte,
Uno es todo


-Jill Scott










"Words are like that, they deceive, they pile up, it seems they do not know where to go, and, suddenly, because of two or three or four that suddenly come out, simple in themselves, a personal pronoun, an adverb, an adjective, we have the excitement of seeing them coming irresistibly to the surface through the skin and the eyes and upsetting the composure of our feelings, sometimes the nerves that can not bear it any longer, they put up with a great deal, they put up with everything, it was as if they were wearing armor, we might say."

- Jose Saramago (Blindness)

Summer reading list for young women of color

The Soul Model 2010 Summer Reading List

Zenzele: A Letter for my Daughter by J. Nozipo Maraire

The Other Side of Paradise by Staceyann Chin

The Book of Night Women by Marlon James

What Looks like Crazy on an Ordinary Day by Pearl Cleage

Invisible Life by E. Lynn Harris

Infidel by Ayaan Hirsi Ali

No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith

Everything Good Will Come by Sefi Atta

Stone Virgins by Yvonne Vera

Reflections of a Black-Eyed Squint by Ama Ata Aidoo

The Thing Around Your Neck by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche
Purple Hibiscus by by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche

Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche

Sula by Toni Morrison

Value in the Valley by Iyanla Vanzant

Zami: A New Spelling of My Name by Audre Lorde

See more here 


Friday, June 18, 2010

I did this painting back in 2008. It's one of my most sold prints and it's one of my unusual ones. I say unusual because this time around, I only used one medium: oil pastel. I remember reading a book about being a woman and went on from there. I remember telling myself that it wasn't necessary for me to draw the male figure because I only wanted to focus solely on the woman. I don't have any elaborate story to share for this piece, however, I would like to add one of my favorite poems by Lucille Clifton as a description of the theme/idea behind this painting.

Homage to My Hips

these hips are big hips.
they need space to
move around in.
they don't fit into little
petty places. these hips
are free hips.
they don't like to be held back.
these hips have never been enslaved,
they go where they want to go
they do what they want to do.
these hips are mighty hips.
these hips are magic hips.
i have known them
to put a spell on a man and
spin him like a top

-Lucille Clifton

"He Loves Me"-Jill Scott

Wednesday, June 16, 2010
"He Loves Me (Lyzel In E Flat)"

You love me especially different every time   
You keep me on my feet happily excited
By your cologne, your hands, your smile, your intelligence
You woo me, you court me, you tease me, you please me
You school me, give me some things to think about
Ignite me, you invite me, you co-write me, you love me, you like me
You incite me to chorus, ooh

You love me especially different every time
You keep me on my feet happily excited
By your cologne, your hands, your smile, your intelligence
You woo me, you court me, you tease me, you please me
You school me, give me things to think about
Invite me, you ignite me, co-write me, you love me, you like me
Incite me to chorus
La, la, la...
Da, da, da...
Do, do, do...

You're different and special
You're different and special in every way imaginable
You love me from my hair follicles to my toenails
You got me feeling like the breeze, easy and free and lovely and new
Oh when you touch me I just can't control it
When you touch me, I just can't hold it
The emotion inside of me, I can feel it


Luv it


"Everything in life that we really accept undergoes a change. So suffering must become love. That is the mystery."

- Katherine Mansfield (via sanchovizzramen) (via katherinemansfieldproject) (via crashinglybeautiful)

Kids are geniuses

Tuesday, June 15, 2010
I was only visiting D.C. for 4 days so I figured I should test out the metro system before I make my big move. While I was on the bus, I met this little girl between the ages 5-7 who opened up my mind.

Let me first start off by saying that folks in D/M/V area are far too kind. I met some really cool people of all ages. Besides Brooklyn and Haiti, I never found any other place that ever felt like home before. D.C. I'm so there and will be a new resident pronto.

Anyway, on my way to Maryland, I met a little girl (her mom was present) who wanted to read to me. She was just learning how to read and you can tell she was excited and pumped that she didn't need much help pronouncing anymore. She was reading a rhyming book and asked me what I thought would happen next. I said "I dunno". She replied back saying "Don't say 'I dunno', use your brain that's what it's for. You're suppose to think."



She was right. I fell into the habit of saying "I don't know" that I forgot the purpose of my brain/mind. I could have easily guessed what would happen in the story because it was a simple children book. The title said it all. Sheep in a Jeep. I could have predicted the plot of the story if I had taken the time to think. So the question is, am I a lazy thinker? Have a lot of us become lazy thinkers where instead of taking a moment to think, we resort to saying "I don't know"?  I don't mean to get all Socrates, but it makes me question the power of Nommo. If words create conditions in our lives, how does the statement "I don't know" affect us? Do we say "I don't know" because we don't feel like talking or because we don't feel like thinking? If so, does it even matter?

When the little girl shared her words of wisdom, I knew that the universe or spirits were stealing my attention. Lately I've been in a je ne sais quoi state of mind, where I've turned into a mindless creature and been fawning over society's group think/authoritarianism, that I forgot how to put on my thinking cap. Ever since I left college, I've been responding to persuasion without critically analyzing what is/was said. And instead of trusting and asserting my own judgments, I applied the "I don't know" response, even when I knew I knew. Not to say that I'm capable of knowing everything presented to me, but I personally need to think before I say "I don't know". I really need to be cautious about the words and phrases I spit out, in order to prevent creating certain things into being.

I'm glad that I ran into this wise little girl because she made sure I heard her. She repeatedly said "Don't say 'I dunno', use your brain that's what it's for. You're suppose to think. You heard me?"...

Artist, In Plain Sight, 9-5.

Monday, June 14, 2010
This poem inspired me today...

Allison (Eve) like Original Sin

Artist, In Plain Sight, 9-5.
How do you find art where there is none? You create it.
Where does it come from? Inside.

I used to be inspired by the depth of a shadow, the curve of a form, the flow of a fabric, the wrinkle of weathered skin, the narrative of blacks, blues & scar silver.
I used to compose a painting in my head, infuse meaning through juxtaposition, imply motion through gestured lines. I used to sit silently for hours with mellow neo-soul music bumping through my laptop speakers, steady keeping the rhythm of the ebbs and flows of paint and creativity.
While these days I zone out to the window just outside my office walls, daydream of huge canvasses and industrial easels, studio space and thick, heavy body paints, those days I used to simply zone into that world.
How do you find art where there is none? You create it.
Where does it come from? Inside.

I stop and wait for inspiration. Get real silent and hope it speaks a language I can understand. Lets me capture it and move through me- a current conducted by otherworldly forces-

This     can’t      be     me.

I am but a vessel to this brilliance, humbled by the act of expression, moved by it-
Driven by it.
Just keep driving by it, until somehow it impels me to leave my problems at the door, to sit, stand, squat or lay down- long as I stay for a while.
This whisper is my religion. This creative ground is gessoed white and pure- I leave my shoes to walk among it and it is at that altar that I emit the toxins that lace me up tightly.
Toxins that tie my hands, I do little to fight.

I used to know restless and channel it, anxious and manage it through art therapy. There was just me and it, still my best relationship to date.
Dates that lasted for hours, no selfish men, but givers of meditative moments. Moments of ablution. Wiped clean by warm, rich colors, charcoal and graphite insidiously spreading across olive toned skin.
Healed by these moments.
Revealed through these moments.
Completely letting go of my superficial self without willing myself to do so.
Self-abandonment that transcends to something larger than us.

How do you find art where there is none? You create it.
Where does it come from? Inside.

Where do you hide this inspiration? The key to this secret world? If not deep within the depths of one’s twisted complexities and over-thinking. Clever to hide it in plain sight.
I don’t feel stupid that I hadn’t found it sooner, in its obvious location, but rather relieved.
Once again, You’ve chosen me. You didn’t have to it, but You did.

I don’t want to stick out (fame can be for those who need it), nor do I want to recede to the antisocial shallows of seclusion, where no relatable art can be made.
Hide me in plain sight.
Whisper inspiration during a mundane work day.
Penetrate my thoughts with something more substantial; less watercolor wash, more heavy matte.
Remember me, even when I’ve all but forgotten You to the seemingly non-artistic stressfulness that fills my busy days.
Calm me down, and work me up if You wish. I have experienced no better feeling than this.
Art is love. Inspiration is restoration for the self I somehow lose to daunting tasks.
Art is the answer to the question you don’t know to ask.
How do you find art where there is none? You create it.
Where does it come from? Inside.
Put me in the last place I would think to hide-
In plain sight, 9-5.

Baby Makes Me: A film about non-traditonal motherhood

Friday, June 11, 2010


Hello Women and Babies and Others,    

Many of you have been emailing to ask if I'm knocked up yet. Not quite but I am still trying. I've had home inseminations, and visited orphanages, and signed up with various lists, and looked into some potential possibilities. I am still looking for donors who want to do the long haul with a woman who will not have sex. Sperm is hard to acquire for a lesbian with limited resources.

Though the bun is not yet in the oven, the film, Baby Makes Me, is pushing on. We have been interviewing and networking and trying our best to create work that will represent the voices of women who have been missing from the larger dialogue about contemporary motherhood. Six weeks ago, Tiona and I were in South Africa talking to the most amazing women. Learning how things are done waay down on the tip of our oldest continent.

We have also been talking to women on this continent of America, listening, taking notes and trying our best to be good vessels for the stories that live here. We have voices from Jamaica. And some from across other seas.

And we have been documenting my own struggle in my own small world.

Some of that will be shown in the earliest clips of the documentary. We would love it if you would come sit with us, talk with us, eat and drink some wine, some juice, some stories- and then, share with us what you think, what you feel, what you want to see of yourselves on screen.

Tiona lives in Philly, and we have so many of you in that area who have great stories, and great voices to tell them. So we are doing our first fundraiser and feeler in your neighborhood. We would be love if you would come and bring your babies and your sisters and be with us on Saturday.

Please forward and post to your facebook pages, and call friends you think would be interested in coming, or being a part of this amazing project.

With love and the courage to stand in the face of all that would have us disappear,

'Baby Makes Me: A Film About Non-Traditional Motherhood'

Hosted By Staceyann Chin Poet and Author of ‘The Other Side Of Paradise’
Philadelphia Filmmaker Tiona.M. ‘black./womyn.:conversations…’ www.blackwomynfilm.com

WHEN: Saturday June 12, 2010
TIME: 5 p.m. - 8 p.m.

LOCATION: Bahdeebahdu
1522 North American Street
Philadelphia, PA 19122

$5 (Refreshments & Libations Included)
*Portion of the proceeds will benefit the 2010 Mountain Meadows Summer Camp Program

Staceyann & Tiona will have a limited amount previous works for purchase at the venue as well.

CONTACT: babymakesme@gmail.com for press and additional info.

Follow us on Twitter: @babymakesme
Join the Facebook Page: Baby Makes Me

Join us for The Philadelphia Fundraiser for Baby Makes Me: A Film About Non-Traditional Motherhood!

Poet/Author Staceyann Chin & Philadelphia Filmmaker Tiona.M. discuss the new film project that they have partnered up to produce. Staceyann and Tiona will also preview never-before-seen footage of the film and share what they have experienced so far in their journey to create this project. Come and preview exclusive the first clips of the film and share your own story about Motherhood!

Questionnaires/applications to be a part of the film will be available at the fundraiser.

Information about the Mountain Meadow’s Summer Camp Program will be available for LGBT parents.

About Mountain Meadows:

Mountain Meadow's Summer Camp program is for youth 9-16 from LGBTQ and other non-traditional families, as well as for youth who are LGBTQ or questioning. We're from all over the United States! We canoe, swim, talk about LGBTQ issues and our families, learn hip hop and step, put on a talent show, go to a dance, and meet fun, and sometime famous, guests. Find out more!

About the Film:

The project actually began when Staceyann approached Tiona to document a pregnancy she wasn't quite sure would be forthcoming. Staceyann, who really wanted to get pregnant, was looking for resources and found there really weren’t any. So it was decided that documenting her process journey toward motherhood would increase the resources available to the women who will decide to do this after her. After preliminary interviews, it was decided that the project would be better served it were approached as a general exploration of single motherhood, viewed through the lenses of Staceyann’s experiences, fears, and hopes. The vision then widened to include women who feel they exist outside of the norm with respect to parenthood. Our mission is to, demystify and provide an honest examination of the process of single women and lesbians, particularly those of color, single heterosexual women, and other women who do not fall into the expected category of women who are partnered to men. Th
e mission with the film is to put real/ordinary faces to the sensationalized assumptions of motherhood and to provide a visual representation to the many questions and criticisms surrounding women, particularly single and lesbian mothers of color in contemporary times.

Baby Makes Me will be of global importance to women who have struggled with the issue of parenting outside of the Victorian age of marriage and nuclear families. Baby Makes Me will be an examination of Staceyann’s, and other Black lesbians’ and single womens’ journey into motherhood, with specific emphasis on lesbians who share parts of her identity; those who reside in Brooklyn NY, single women and lesbians who are of African descent, of Caribbean descent, women who are working artists, women of color, etc. On the national level we intend to explore location, with respect to neighborhood or region, and how that may or may not affect single and/or lesbian motherhood. We will look at various state laws and probe the backgrounds of the mothers involved. In the international arena we will have the chance to explore motherhood as it relates to various (including but not limited to South African, Jamaican, American) cultures. We hope to explore the differences and similarities with respect to motherhood between communities in the new global neighborhood of the 21st Century.


Wednesday, June 9, 2010
I've been a little quiet here. Not because I don't have much to say, but because I have too much. A lot of changes in my life however I don't share them on my blog because I question whether or not it's wise to write about my personal life. I know I have before, but I realized that people may not care to know therefore I stopped.

I don't know, maybe it's one of those phases, maybe even a quarter-life crisis which is supposedly a time where I'd question everything. I don't know. It could be writer's block as well since I can't express myself properly. It could also be fear-uncertainty-fear-uncertainty, yes the cycle continues. In fact, I've been putting a lot of past events on replay and lost my self a bit.  Half of me knows that I'm making right moves and should be proud and drown in a euphoric state because I'm following my dreams and making things happen. But the other side of me is stuck in the 'what ifs'; 'maybe I should have done this differently' or 'if that happened in the past maybe it'll happen in the future again so let me just settle here'. It's so bad that it even affects my judgment of whether or not something is worth mentioning in my own blog.

By the way, I'm moving. Thought this information would help to understand the thoughts spilled on this post. But yes. I'm moving to another State/city for school. It's one of those information that I wondered if I should share with my virtual friends. I didn't want my blog to turn into facebook status updates and have people ask why I feel the need to share my personal life via the internet. I never really sought it has a problem though, because I'm a storyteller. But sometimes I wonder if I'm just having transient relationships in a cyberspace realm. Do my cyber friends really care what I'm up to or not? In fact, should I be concerned about putting too much of my personal life out there? Wherever there is.

I've been conflicted with these thoughts lately. It's to a point where I don't know in what direction to steer my blog. I'm a random person, thus my blog is random but I've been wondering if I should try to be consistent in order to increase my followers...

For now, I don't know. But I will figure this out soon

                                       "Release Me"