Sunday, January 31, 2010

Be Blessed: Positive Thinking is Easy (Really!)

Everyday as we go about our daily tasks, we are constantly having inner dialogs - Some good ("Girl, you are working that outfit today!")and some bad ("Why even bother... that's never going to happen!".

I have realized a long time ago that there is no way to perfectly remove the negative chatter... it's job is to distract and steer you from your path, and it diligently goes about it's job. What we can do... is ensure that we don't steer, that we don't bend, that we don't pause and doubt ourselves.

One method that has worked for me is a mantra I created when I was a teenager. "Whatevah, money..." It's my particular Brooklyn-girl way of saying "Talk to the hand, man... You have no power here!" Another method is the weekly incorporation of a specific affirmation, one that is specific to what you are currently wanting to work on (love, success, wisdom, growth, peace of mind, etc.).

Either print the words out, or write it down, and place it somewhere you will be able to look at it every single day (Bathroom/Bedroom Mirror, the Fridge, etc.). Each time you glance and read these words, you will be making it a part of the inner chatter in your mind. You will be giving yourself a terrific opportunity to change your life, by simply starting within. With every sunrise, we are blessed with a new day and a new opportunity to love, strengthen and heal ourselves.


I'd like to share with y'all an excerpt from a book that I have found immensely helpful. Shakti Gawain's Reflections in the Light: Daily Thoughts and Affirmations is a book that has 365 affirmations, one for every day of the year. When I first bought it, I would diligently read the day's message every morning when I woke up and every evening before retiring to bed. As the years progressed, I made an almost divination game out of it: I would hold the book to me and ask my higher self to guide me to the affirmation I need to work on in a particular week. And I would turn the pages until one jumped out at me.

The below affirmation is the first one in the book (January 1st). May it inspire you to take a fresh new start and strengthen you with positivity.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

A Little [JOHN COLTRANE] for a Saturday Night

I am so in love with this song! It's a bitterly cold night here in Brooklyn, so I am nestled under the covers, listening to music. When this song started playing, I jumped up and pulled out my laptop because I knew this would be the perfect "for a Saturday Night" song!!!



John Coltrane "Naima"

Friday, January 29, 2010

DOPE: "somebody almost walked off wid..." Ntozake Shange

I have heard rumors that Tyler Perry is making a film adaptation of "For Colored Girls..... ". I maintain an "optimistic, but wary" stance about that.

Anyway, Buena Batiste (who I just discovered searching for this monologue) is fantastic in her performance, so I give her a big two thumbs up for that.



somebody almost walked off wid alla my stuff
- Ntozake Shange

somebody almost walked off wid alla my stuff
not my poems or a dance i gave up in the street
but somebody almost walked off wid alla my stuff
like a kleptomaniac workin hard & forgettin while stealin
this is mine/this aint yr stuff/
now why don't you put me back & let me hang out in my own self
somebody almost walked off wit alla my stuff
& didn't care enuf to send a note home sayin
i was late for my solo conversation
or two sizes to small for my own tacky skirts
what can anybody do wit somethin of no value on
a open market/ did you getta dime for my things/
hey man/ where are you goin wid alla my stuff/
to ohh & ahh abt/ daddy/ i gotta mainline number
from my own shit/ now wontcha put me back/ & let
me play this duet/ wit silver ring in my nose/
honest to god/ somebody almost run off wit alla my stuff/
& i didnt bring anythin but the kick & sway of it
the perfect ass for my man & none of it is theirs
this is mine/ ntozake 'her own things'/ that's my name
now give me my stuff/ i see ya hidin my laugh/ & how i
sit wif my legs open sometimes/ to give my crotch
some sunlight/ & there goes my love my toes my chewed
up finger nails/ niggah/ wif the curls in yr hair/
mr. louisiana hot link/ i want my stuff back/
my rhytums & my voice/ open my mouth/ & let me talk ya
outta/ throwin my shit in the sewar/ this is some delicate
leg & whimsical kiss/ i gotta have to give to my choice/
without you runnin off wit alla my shit/
now you cant have me less i give me away/ & i waz
doin all that/ til ya run off on a good thing/
who is this you left me wit/ some simple bitch
widda bad attitude/ i wants my things/
i want my arm wit the hot iron scar/ & my leg wit the
flea bite/ i want my calloused feet & quik language back
in my mouth/ fried plantains/ pineapple pear juice/
sun-ra & joseph & jules/ i want my own things/ how i lived them/
& give me my memories/ how i waz when i waz there/
you cant have them or do nothin wit them/
stealin my shit from me/ dont make it yrs/ makes it stolen/
somebody almost run off wit alla my stuff/ & i waz standin
there/ lookin at myself/ the whole time
& it waznt a spirit took my stuff/ waz a man whose
ego walked round like Rodan's shadow/ waz a man faster
n my innocence/ waz a lover/ i made too much
room for/ almost run off wit alla my stuff/
& i didnt know i'd give it up so quik/ & the one runnin wit it/
don't know he got it/ & i'm shoutin this is mine/ & he dont
know he got it/ my stuff is the anonymous rip[ped off treasure
of the year/ did you know somebody almost got away wit me/
me in a plastic bag under their arm/ me
danglin on a string of personal carelessness/ i'm spattered wit
mud & city rain/ & no i didnt get a chance to take a douche/
hey man/ this is not your perogative/ i gotta have me in my
pocket/ to get round like a good woman shd/ & make the poem
in the pot or the chicken in the dance/ what i got to do/
i gotta get my stuff to do it to/
why dont ya find yr own things/ & leave this package
of me for my destiny/ what ya got to get from me/
i'll give it to ya/ yeh/ i'll give it to ya/
round 5:00 in the winter/ when the sky is blue-red/
& Dew City is gettin pressed/ if it's really my stuff/
ya gotta give it to me/ if ya really want it/ i'm
the only one/ can handle it


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Miss Moon's Musing About: Adulthood (As Seen on TV)

I am 32 years old... so I have been an adult for over a decade now. And I can honestly say that until very recently, I did not enjoy my adult years. My 20s, put plainly, sucked. And I blame Hollywood for it. LOL

It all started when I was 17 years old and saw the movie "Reality Bites"... About Gen X College Graduates going out into the Real World! Man, was Janeane Garofalo, Ethan Hawke and Winona Ryder cool as hell! I envisioned my life being a chocolate-coated version of the movie!






I wanted to be just as creative and quirky and counter-cultural as they were.... until 2007. And then..... I saw "Love Jones"!!! Whooooo, chile!




I was 20 years old and I thought the Universe was sending me a celluloid version of what I had in store for the next decade. The passion, the culture, the music, the dope ass, awesome life!










Sadly, my 20s was not as eventful or passionate as Nia Long's character, Nina. Which I guess could be a blessing in disguise, since she spent the entire movie pining for Darius (Larenz Tate), only to finally get it together a year later, being drenched in the cold cold rain.... sorry if I'm giving a spoiler! LOL

All-in-all, I really shouldn't complain. My twenties weren't so horrifically bad. I did a lot of growth work, which has made me the woman I am today. And my life is pretty damn terrific now.

So instead of kvetching about my 20s, I will end this trip back to the 90s with two of my favorite songs from "Reality Bites" and "Love Jones".... enjoy, y'all.



Squeeze "Tempted"



Lauryn Hill "The Sweetest Thing"

Peace from Brooklyn!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Music Therapy with Miss Moon

Today was such a rainy, dreary, bleh kinda Monday here in NYC, so I had to pick an upbeat, cheery song his week. Enjoy!



Junior Senior "Move Your Feet"


Sunday, January 24, 2010

Be Blessed: Blossoming

I have spent a lot of time these past few months ignoring my spirituality and my self improvement. And I have felt it's absence strongly. I made a resolution to a) acknowledge my spirit & b) share a bit more of my spirit in this blog... so I figured out a way I could merge the two together, with my new weekly blog posting "Be Blessed"... Some Sunday inspiration to bring us into a new week.

The Nature of This Flower Is to Bloom
Alice Walker

Rebellious. Living.
Against the Elemental Crush.
A Song of Color
Blooming
For Deserving Eyes.
Blooming Gloriously
For its Self.

Revolutionary Petunia.

When life feels stagnant and stuck... it's hard to recognize that you are, in fact, blossoming. I've only just realized how far I've grown in the past few years, and it's a feeling that fills me with so much gratitude.

This week I will reflect on where my life is now and be glad... and reflect on where my life is going and be excited!!!


Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Little [RAPHAEL SAADIQ] for a Saturday Night



"Staying in Love" Raphael Saadiq


Yummm! Tantalizing Tapas Party

One thing I cannot wait to do when Chris and I move into our own place is to have our peeps over for a Tapas Party! Serve copious amounts of Sangria and have plates and plates of hot, steamy, bite-sized goodies for them to nibble on.

While compiling the recipes I thought of a fantastic idea: I might do a "Dinner and a Movie" Night and pair the tapas with a Pedro Almodóvar flick (Oooh.... "Mujeres al borde de un ataque de nervios" or "Volver" would be great!).

But enough about the movies... Let's get going with the food & drinks!


Garlic Shrimp Tapa Recipe - Gambas al Ajillo
Recipe Courtesy of About.com



Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients:

1 lb shrimp, 25 count to a pound
4 large cloves of garlic, finely minced
1 tsp sweet Spanish paprika
1 tsp red pepper flakes
2-3 oz of cognac (you may substitute dry sherry instead)
1/4 cup virgin olive oil
3 tsp chopped fresh parsley
1 lemon for juice
1 Baguette
Preparation:

This garlic shrimp recipe, gambas al ajillo makes 4 servings as an appetizer.

The shrimp can be peeled first, before cooking them if you prefer. In addition, if you like larger shrimp, you may purchase shrimp with fewer count to a pound. However, 25 to a pound are about the right size for this tapa.

In a sauté pan or heavy frying pan, warm the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and sauté for about one minute or until they begin to brown. Be careful not to burn the garlic!

Raise the heat to high and add the shrimp, lemon juice, sherry or cognac and paprika. Stir well, then sauté, stirring briskly until the shrimp turn pink and curl – about 3 minutes.

Remove from heat and transfer shrimp with oil and sauce to a warm plate or serve right from the pan. Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Sprinkle with parsley.


Crispy Potatoes with Tangy Tomato Sauce (Patatas Bravas)

Recipe Courtesy of FineCooking.com



For the sauce:
1-1/2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1/3 cup chopped onion (1/2 small)
1/3 cup chopped carrot (1 small)
2 medium cloves garlic, smashed and peeled
1 Tbs. dry white wine
1/4 tsp. sweet pimentón (or paprika)
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
1-1/2 cups canned tomatoes with juice, chopped coarsely
3 large sprigs thyme
1 tsp. granulated sugar
1/4 tsp. Tabasco, more to taste
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/4 tsp. sherry vinegar
For the potatoes:
2-1/2 lb. (about 8 medium) Yukon Gold, white, or red potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 1-inch pieces (no need to peel)
1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt
1 tsp. chopped fresh rosemary (optional)
Make the sauce: In a small (1- or 2-quart) saucepan, heat the 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes. Add the wine and let it reduce until almost evaporated, about 1 minute. Add the pimentón and cumin and stir for about 15 seconds. Add the tomatoes and juice, thyme sprigs, sugar, Tabasco, 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, and a few grinds of pepper.

Reduce the heat to a gentle simmer and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, to reduce the sauce somewhat and intensify its flavor. This should take about 1 hour; depending on how much juice you started with, you may need to add up to 12 cup water during simmering to keep the consistency saucy rather than dry.

Fish out the spent thyme sprigs. Purée the sauce with an immersion blender or a regular blender until it’s smooth and creamy; you can thin with a little water if needed. Stir in the sherry vinegar. Taste and add salt and pepper, if needed. The sauce should be slightly spicy, and you should have about 1-1/2 cups.

Roast the potatoes: Heat the oven to 425°F. Toss the potatoes with the olive oil, 1 teaspoon kosher salt, and the rosemary (if using) on a large rimmed baking sheet. Roast, turning the potatoes with a metal spatula every 15 minutes, until they’re browned and crisp outside and tender inside, about 45 minutes.

Put the potatoes in a serving dish and put the sauce in a small dish next to the potatoes, along with a spoon.


Crisp Shrimp Fritters - Tortillitas de Camarones
Recipe Courtesy of Spain Recipes


Ingredients
1/2 pound small shrimp, peeled
1 1/2 cups chickpea or regular flour
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
3 scallions, white part and a little of the tender green tops, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon sweet pimenton
Salt
Olive oil for deep-frying

Preparation

In a saucepan, combine the shrimp with water to cover and bring to a boil over high heat. As soon as the water starts to boil, quickly lift out the shrimp with a slotted spoon and set aside. Scoop out 1 cup of the cooking water and let cool. Discard the remaining water. When the shrimp are cool, cover and refrigerate until needed.

To make the batter, combine the flour, parsley, scallions and pimentón in a bowl or a food processor. Add a pinch of salt and the cooled cooking water. Mix or process well until you obtain a texture slightly thicker than a pancake batter. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Remove the shrimp from the refrigerator and mince finely. The pieces should be the size of coffee grounds. Remove the batter from the refrigerator, add the shrimp, and mix well.
Pour the olive oil to a depth of about 1 inch into a heavy sauté pan and heat over high heat until it is almost smoking. Add 1 tablespoon of the batter to the oil for each fritter and, using the back of the spoon, immediately flatten the batter into a round 3 1/2 inches in diameter. Do not crowd the pan.

Fry, turning once, for about 1 minute on each side, or until the fritters are golden and very crisp with what Spanish cooks call puntillas, or lacelike formations, on the borders.
Using a slotted spoon, lift out the fritters, holding them briefly over the pan to allow the excess oil to drain, and transfer to an ovenproof platter lined with paper towels to drain further.

Keep the fritters warm in a low oven. Fry the rest of the batter in the same way, always making sure the oil is very hot before frying more fritters. When all the fritters are fried, arrange them on a platter and serve immediately.


Pa amb Oli - Bread with olive oil
Recipe Courtesy of Spain Recipes



Ingredients
6 (3/4-inch thick) slices dark rye bread
1 clove garlic, halved (optional)
3 tomatoes, halved crosswise
Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling
Salt

Preparation

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.
Place the bread slices on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 5 minutes, or until golden and crisp. Remove from the oven and immediately rub 1 side of each slice with a cut side of the garlic, if desired. Then rub the same side of each slice with the cut side of a tomato half, pressing a little to squeeze some of the pulp and seeds onto the bread. Drizzle olive oil over the tomato and sprinkle with salt. Serve while the bread is still warm and crisp.

Ensaladilla rusa - Spanish Potato Salad
Recipe Courtesy of Spain Recipes


Ingredients
3 medium (16 oz) potatoes
1 large (3 oz) carrot, diced
5 tablespoons shelled green peas
2/3 cup (4 oz) green beans
1/2 medium onion, chopped
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
4 cocktail gherkins, sliced
2 tablespoons baby capers
12 anchovy-stuffed olives
1 hard-cooked egg, sliced thin
2/3 cup (5 fl. oz) mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Chopped fresh parsley, to garnish

Preparation

In a saucepan, cook the potatoes and carrot in lightly salted water. Bring to a boil and allow to simmer until almost tender. Fold in the peas and beans, and cook until all the vegetables are tender. Drain the vegetables and transfer them into a serving platter. Add the onion, pepper, gherkins, baby capers, anchovy-stuffed olives, and egg slices.

In a separate bowl, thoroughly combine the mayonnaise, lemon juice and mustard. Add this mixture to the serving platter, mixing well to ensure all the ingredients are coated. Sprinkle with pepper and toss. Garnish with chopped parsley and refrigerate. Allow to stand at room temperature for about 1 hour immediately before serving to enhance the salad's flavor. As any dish made with mayonnaise, ensaladilla should be refrigerated and will not keep for more than 1 to 2 days.


Meatballs in tomato sauce
Recipe Courtesy of Spain Recipes


Ingredients

2 tablespoons of olive oil
8 oz ground beef
1 cup (2 oz) fresh white breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons grated Manchego or Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon tomato paste
3 cloves garlic, chopped fine
2 scallions, chopped fine
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 cups (16 oz) canned plum tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons red wine
2 teaspoons chopped fresh basil leaves
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary

Preparation

In a bowl, thoroughly mix together the beef, breadcrumbs, cheese, tomato paste, garlic, scallions, egg, thyme, turmeric, salt, and pepper. Using your hands, shape the mixture into 12 to 15 firm balls.
Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs and cook for several minutes or until browned on all sides.

Add the tomatoes, wine, basil, and rosemary. Simmer gently for around 20 minutes, or until the meatballs are cooked. Season generously with salt and pepper and serve hot.


Friday, January 22, 2010

Miss Moon's Musing About: Strutting

"Sherman, no matter what, you've got to strut.
You got to suck in your gut and strut."


Buddy Love, The Nutty Professor

I am a firm believer in strutting. Especially when you have nothing to strut about. My favorite time to strut is the five block walk from the bus stop to my job. Believe me, it's not something I always do. Most of the time, I'm making a mad dash or doing the zombie-walk like most folk you see walking around the Broadway/Nassau junction in Manhattan.

But I find it's a great way to motivate myself to keep moving, stop lallygagging, and get myself to the office. Some people shadow box a la "Rocky" ... I strut.

Music is the most important aspect of a well-executed strut. My iPod is a beloved part of my daily commute to work, and I've made it a little game to shuffle my tunes. I know that when a Strutting Song comes on, it's a sign that I need give myself a boost, and you better believe, I do!

So I thought I would share with you My Top Five Strutting Songs. Add these tunes as a Playlist on your MP3 and tune in for an instant pick me up:

# 5:  "Pretty Young Thing" - Michael Jackson This song will definitely make you feel like a Tender Ronie.
# 4: "Vibrate On" - Erykah Badu  "They knew I was gangsta, when I hit the door"... Word.
# 3: "Sleep to Dream" - Fiona Apple  For a swagger kind of strut. Trust me, it works!
# 2: "Soul Makossa" - Manu Dibango Great song for when you have to make an entrance!
# 1: "We Trying to Stay Alive" - Wyclef Jean Of course you can also rock the original "Staying Alive" by the BeeGees for bit of nostalgia. John Travolta's strut is the best endorsement for the song!!




Wednesday, January 20, 2010

:::drools::: No Jive... I'm Batty for Bags!!!

If you've read this blog at least three times, you know it's no surprise that I am a total bag-a-holic. I wouldn't dare deny it!

So I am currently stalking checking out three particular bags online, and thought that I would share the goodies (you know how I do!):


Snake in the Bluegrass Handbag ($39.00, Lulu's)

I am so diggin on this faux-snake skin bag!!!



FREECITY Life Nature Love Bag ($28.00, ShopBop)

Fans of the show "Girlfriends' may recognize the name Free City. Tracee Ellis Ross' character Joan was frequently seen wearing Free City tees on the show. Since their largest size is a Small... I figured the handbag would be good too! LOL



BCBGeneration Tilly Hobo ($118.00, Macy's)

I am loving this style: it's simple yet very chic.


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Music Therapy with Miss Moon

Okay, I know that many will consider the following statement sacrilegious, but I like Natalie Cole's version better than the Beatles'. Yeah, I said it! lol



This live version does not do the song much justice, so before you judge, click here to hear the original (live) version. Tell me Natalie Cole doesn't take Lucy to "Chuch" (Not "church", mind you... but "chuch"- rent "The Kings of Comedy" for an explanation on that one! lol)


Saturday, January 16, 2010

A Little [TEDDY PENDERGRASS] for a Saturday Night



Theodore DeReese "Teddy" Pendergrass (March 26, 1950 – January 13, 2010)

Rest In Peace!!


Thursday, January 14, 2010

DOPE: Keith Olbermann's Quick Comment about Haiti

Now I know I said I wouldn't say anything about Pat Robertson... and today I resigned myself not to say anything about Rush Limbaugh and his comments about the earthquake and the devastation in Haiti. And technically I'm not saying anything.

However.... I think Keefus' comments are quite similar to my own (If you add an expletive here and there).



Below is an excerpt of the transcript which can be read in its entirety by clicking here:

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

OLBERMANN:

Back to Haiti in a moment, and reports now that quake victims in Haiti from the United States have been evacuated to, of all places, Guantanamo Bay. The first subject of the quick comment tonight is still the matter of Haiti, but relating to back here.

Even the worst of us in this political mosh pit of the early 21st century can stop, on occasion, in grief and in human sympathy, in mourning, or just in self-preservation. Not Rush Limbaugh and not Pat Robertson. We‘ll explore this at length later.

But Mr. Robertson, it is laughable now to try to call him reverend, explained today that this earthquake was part of a, quote, “deal with the devil,” that he claims the nation made in the 19th century to gain its freedom from France. “True story,” Robertson says.

Sir, because of your tone deafness, and your delight in human misery, and your dripping, self-satisfied, holier than thou, senile crap, I am now likelier to believe that you are the devil.

Limbaugh, meantime, did not know just when to shut up. Today he blamed communism for the poverty of Haiti, blamed President Obama for holding a news conference the day after this cataclysm, when he did not hold one after the failed, half assed attempt in Detroit, and said that Obama would, quote, “use Haiti to,” quote, “burnish their, shall we say, credibility with the black community in the both light-skinned and dark-skinned black community in this country.”

Mr. Robertson, Mr. Limbaugh, your lives are not worth those of the lowest, meanest, poorest of those victims still lying under that rubble in Haiti tonight. You serve no good. You serve no God. You inspire only stupidity and hatred. And I would wish you to hell. But knowing how empty your souls must be for you to be able to say such things in a time of such pain, I suspect the vacant, purposeless lives you both live now are hell enough already.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

DO SOMETHING: Haiti Earthquake Relief

So I really really really want to blog about Pat Robertson. But I decided against it for two reasons: 1) It would be silly to dedicate two blog entries this week to TWO idiots with "foot-in-the-mouth" syndrome, and 2) I thought it would be MUCH more important to send that flow of energy to the people who actually need it: The People of Haiti.




So here are 5 ways to help out:
  • Text "Yele" to 501501 and $5 will be charged to your phone bill and given to relief projects through Wyclef Jean's foundation, Yele Haiti, or you can make a donation directly to their website http://www.yele.org/

  • CARE has deployed an emergency team to Port-au-Prince today to assist in recovery efforts. Their area of focus is rescuing children who may still be trapped in schools that collapsed. Make a donation to CARE

  • 100% of your donation will go to the relief effort if you make a donation to the Baptist Haiti Mission. They are currently operating an 82-bed hospital that is "overflowing with injured.", and can definitely use the help. Make a donation to http://www.bhm.org/bhm/index.php

  • Doctors Without Borders has BEEN in Haiti and has already set up clinics to treat the growing number of injured. Donate any amount so they can keep their efforts going by visiting http://doctorswithoutborders.org/.

  • The American Red Cross has pledged $200,000 (which isn't a whole helluva lot, let's be honest). They expect to provide immediate needs for food, water, temporary shelter, medical services and emotional support. They are accepting donations through their International Response Fund by going to http://american.redcross.org/site/PageServer?pagename=ntld_main .

For more ideas go to http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/01/12/haiti-earthquake-relief-h_n_421014.html

Peace from Brooklyn & Prayers for Haiti!!!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Music Therapy with Miss Moon

This one goes out to my home girl and Pirate Sistah, Toya... who just by updating her Face Book status made a song pop into my head that I hadn't thought of in YEARS.

Inner City "Good Life" (Ain't it, though?)




Champions of Crackheadedness: Rod Blagojevich

By now you've heard the story, and all over pundits, blogger and barbershops are buzzing with comments about Former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's statement about President Barack Obama:

“This guy, he was catapulted in on hope and change, what we hope the guy is. What the fuck? Everything he's saying's on the teleprompter. I'm blacker than Barack Obama. I shined shoes. I grew up in a five-room apartment. My father had a little laundromat in a black community not far from where we lived. I saw it all growing up."


 

Now, what now? "What the fuck?", indeed! This is my beef...people who consider themselves a PhD in Afro-American Studies just because they watched 70s & 80s black t.v. shows...

This may knock Rod off his socks but there are millions of African-Americans who have never shined shoes for a living. And just because both your Daddy and George Jefferson owned a laundromat (Though technically George owned a dry-cleaner), does not mean that being a small business owner is part in parcel of the WHOLE African American experience... (even though it should be!)

And he's actually like a five-room apartment is the same as an entire family living in an efficiency!!! A five-room apartment is THREE BEDROOMS, Y'ALL!!!! It's not exactly trailer fabulous, you know?

Saturday, January 9, 2010

A Little [DINAH WASHINGTON] for a Saturday Night

There are Saturday nights where all I want to do is dance my ass off. There are Saturday nights where all I want to do cuddle up with Chris and kiss through an entire album. This Saturday night, however.... I just want to curl up under my covers and just listen to Dinah Washington's voice sing all the drama, sadness, anxiety, fear, anger away from the past week.



Dinah Washington - Mood Indigo


Friday, January 8, 2010

Cruelty for Cruelty Sake...

So, I was walking down Fulton Street heading home, when I was verbally assaulted by a group of young men.

The ring leader announces upon looking at me to his friends, "You know what I hate more than anything in the world? Fat Bitches!!!!".

His friends didn't even respond to his callous comment and neither did I. I just kept walking as if his comment fell on deaf ears. As I turned the corner, I felt the tears fall down my cheek, which I attributed to the cold, but.... I know the truth.

I did nothing to this young man and his friends but exist. And my mere existence was the catalyst for his venom. I guess it's always so astonishing for me to see people being cruel for cruelty sake. I value life and even if I don't like a person, I would never deny or disrespect their humanity... and I would never intentionally hurt someone for sport.

I need to take a shower and wash that shit right out of my hair.

Peace (and Love) from Brooklyn!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Yummm! Sunday Brunch for the Girls...

One of my New Year's Resolutions is to spend time with my homegirls. What better way to accomplish that than to have them over to the crib for a lovely Sunday Brunch? (Even if it's not Sunday! lol) Of course, I have the whole "get-a-crib" obstacle to tackle, but it's do-able, and once that's accomplished, I'll be cooking this meal to serve to my girls:

Vegetable Shrimp Frittata




Recipe Courtesy of Alberta Egg Producers

8 eggs
125 mL (1/2 cup) skim milk
30 mL (2 tbsp) chopped fresh basil or 10 mL (2 tsp) dried basil
To taste salt and pepper
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
4 green onions, sliced
1 small red pepper, cut into strips
250 mL (1 cup) sliced mushrooms
1 can (106 g) medium shrimp, drained
50 mL (1/4 cup) shredded part-skim mozzarella and cheddar cheese blend
Beat eggs with milk and basil; season with salt and pepper; set aside. Spray a 25 cm (10-inch) non-stick skillet with cooking spray. Heat over medium-high heat. Sauté garlic with green onions, red pepper and mushrooms for 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium. Pour egg mixture over vegetables in skillet. As mixture sets at the edges, with spatula, gently lift cooked portion to allow uncooked egg to flow underneath. Cook until bottom is set and the top is almost set, about 4 minutes. Sprinkle shrimp and cheese over top. Broil for 2 minutes or until eggs are set and cheese is melted. OR For individual frittatas, spray 4 small casserole dishes (375 mL/1-1/2 cups) with cooking spray; divide sautéed vegetables and egg mixture among them. Bake in a 180°C (350°F) oven for 15 minutes or until top is almost set. Sprinkle shrimp with cheese over top. Broil for 2 minutes or until eggs are set and cheese is melted.

Makes: 4 servings.
Preparation: 10 minutes Cooking: 7 minutes Broiling: 2 minutes.


Mushroom And Red Pepper Frittata





Recipe Courtesy of Mr. Breakfast
(6 servings)

3 tablespoons butter
1 onion -- finely chopped
1 clove garlic -- minced
1 lb mushrooms -- sliced
2 red peppers -- diced
3 tablespoons fresh parsley -- chopped
8 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
2 cups cheddar cheese -- grated
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 cup fresh breadcrumbs
3 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

1. Melt butter in large skillet.
2. Add onion and garlic.
3. Saute until tender, without browning.
4. Add mushrooms and red peppers.
5. Cook until all liquid from mushrooms and peppers evaporates.
6. Mixture should be quite dry.
7. Add parsley.
8. Cool.
9. Beat eggs with milk in large bowl.
10. Add veggies and remaining ingredients-- except parmesan.
11. Pour mixture into buttered 9"X13" baking dish.
12. Smooth top.
13. Sprinkle with parmesan.
14. Bake 35-40 minutes at 350 or until set.
15. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
16. Recipe can be halved and baked in and 8" square or round baking dish.


Maple Country Turkey Sausage Patties





Recipe Courtesy of Rachael Ray

2 pounds ground turkey
4 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons grill seasoning
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), plus additional for drizzling
PREPARATION
Pre-heat oven to 450ºF.

In a large bowl, combine the ground turkey, maple syrup and grill seasoning. Work the meat to combine all the ingredients then form patties 2-3-inches round.

Place a large skillet over medium high heat with EVOO. Brown patties in the skillet for 2-3 minutes on each side. Place the patties on a baking sheet, drizzle them lightly with oil, and finish baking them in the oven until they are golden brown and reach an internal temperature of 165ºF, about 5-6 minutes.


Blushing Mimosas






Recipe Courtesy of My Recipes

Prep: 5 min. The classic mimosa is equal parts orange juice and Champagne. In this recipe, pineapple juice and grenadine add a twist of flavor and color.

Yield: Makes 6 cups
Ingredients
2 cups orange juice (not from concentrate)
1 cup pineapple juice, chilled
2 tablespoons grenadine
1 (750-milliliter) bottle Champagne or sparkling wine, chilled*
Preparation
1. Stir together first 3 ingredients.

2. Pour equal parts orange juice mixture and Champagne into Champagne flutes.

*2 (12-oz.) cans ginger ale or lemon-lime soda may be substituted.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Simply Orange 100% Orange Juice.


Sweet Potato Biscuits





Recipe courtesy Paula Deen

Cook Time:15 minLevel: EasyYield: 15 to 18 biscuits
Recipe Tools:
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Ingredients
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 heaping tablespoons sugar
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup mashed cooked sweet potatoes
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) softened butter
2 to 4 tablespoons milk (depending on the moisture of the potatoes)
Directions
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. In a separate, large bowl, mix the sweet potatoes and butter. Add the flour mixture to the potato mixture and mix to make a soft dough. Then add milk a tablespoon at a time to mixture and continue to cut in. Turn the dough out onto a floured board and toss lightly until the outside of the dough looks smooth. Roll the dough out to 1/2-inch thick and cut with a biscuit cutter. Place the biscuits on a greased pan and coat tops with melted butter. Bake for about 15 minutes. (Watch your oven: If the biscuits are browning too fast, lower the temperature.)

I'm REALLY Diggin': Avon's ADVANCE TECHNIQUES Dry Ends Serum

So My Mum (Mizz Lennnid) is THE, I repeat THE Avon Queen.... so please feel free to address her formally as Queen Mizz AVON Lennid. LOL

She has so many unopened boxes and bottles of goodies that she could very easily open a small store, or at least a kiosk somewhere and make a grip on the stock she currently has.

About a month ago, I wrote a blog about Winter Hair Regimens and around the same time she was raving about ADVANCE TECHNIQUES Dry Ends Serum from Avon and was suggesting I try it out. I was still in the process of putting together my routine and figured I would try it for a few weeks to see if I like it on my braid outs, which (as I've mentioned before) get very dry at the ends by week's end.




I've been diligently following this routine for about three weeks now and WOW!!! My hair is shinier, healthier and I am actually starting to see just how much my hair has grown in the past few months!


My routine is a simple variation of my normal one, with a few twists. I am thinking of doing a picture tutorial blog to show you what I do with my hair during the course of 7 days and would get to it if there was an interest for it (Let me know!)

For more information on Avon's Advance Techniques Dry Ends Serum, go to http://www.avon.com/1/1/990-advance-techniques-dry-ends-serum.html

Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Little [SPARKLE] for a Saturday Night

This movie is one of my favorites... and this song is simply just D-O-P-E dope!!!


"Giving Him Something He Can Feel"
Sparkle Soundtrack - 1976

Lead Vocal by Lonette McKee